At just 8 years old, Khalil was already running his own business selling sweet treats and snacks to his schoolmates. The third grader was so successful, the school administration called his mother to complain that students were no longer buying food at the cafeteria. His entrepreneurial spirit only grew from there and in high school, Khalil established his own online business reselling sneakers.
A member of the graduating class of 2021, Khalil, a resident of Covenant House New Orleans, is on his way to college this fall, where he will continue to pursue his love of business and a bachelor’s degree in business management. With acceptance letters from three universities, Khalil was able to choose the school he felt was the best fit for his aspirations, the University of New Orleans.
He credits Covenant House New Orleans with assisting him through his final months of high school.
Jane Helire, educational/vocational manager, says, “I immediately noticed how serious this young man was about his education.”
Khalil readily takes advantage of every opportunity to advance his dreams. While the COVID pandemic shut down in-class learning, he arrived on time every day for his virtual classes. When some residents who joined in the virtual learning opportunities were not quite as attentive to the lessons, Jane placed Khalil in a private room where he could focus on his learning experience without disruption.
Khalil always knew he was going to college and was able to secure a couple of scholarships to help fund his education. From there, he’ll continue his entrepreneur endeavors by creating businesses that will allow him to hire New Orleans residents and give back to his community.
With his focus on entrepreneurship, Khalil says, “I’m ready” to take on whatever the future may hold.
This piece was written by Jamel Thigpen, a Youth Engagement Development Manager at Covenant House International.