Here is Crystal, a graduate of the Bright Future program!

(This article, written in early 2017, features Crystal B., who first entered Bright Future in 2000. We were pleased that she served on our board for several years.)

Meet Crystal B., a wife, the mother of a cute thirteen-month-old and a working dental hygienist. (See her hard at work on this page.) But seventeen Crystal B., a dental hygienist at workyears ago, she was a senior at Seattle's (then) alternative high school, John Marshall High School (JMHS), without any plans for her future.

She says, "I had no direction. My mom had never worked and had no guidance for me." But, at that time, Reza Khastou, Bright Future founder and director, met Crystal in the halls at John Marshall and kept asking her what her goals were.

Crystal says, "I had no goals. But then he started saying, 'Crystal, I have a program for you--actually there are two: Medical Assisting and Dental Assisting. You just need to choose!' So I chose: Dental Assisting…He was pursuing me--and I am so thankful!"

Reza took her to Seattle Vocational Institute (SVI) and got her signed up there and also helped her enroll in Washington State's Running Start program. By doing the Dental Assisting program and a few contract classes, she could meet the JMHS credit requirements, and so graduated from high school and from her program with a workforce certificate.

The Dental Assisting program was three college quarters and an externship. Crystal's new skills were excellent: the dental office where she did the externship hired her after the externship was complete! Crystal could then live independently because her new job gave her a living wage.

Crystal is grateful for the coordinating Reza did with Bright Future Dollars for Scholars (BFDFS) to help her with the extra costs of the Dental Assisting program and with some of the costs later when she continued schooling to get the prerequisite classes she needed for entry into Shoreline's Dental Hygienist program.

Regarding the support she received, Crystal says, "The financial support of Bright Future Dollars for Scholars and Reza's coordination with them is extremely important. I feel like at-risk students have no guidance. They need someone to care about them."

So, Crystal attended Shoreline Community College after the Bright Future program. What does she think is the difference between the support available at a technical school or a community college and the support available at the Bright Future program? She replies, "There is some support at a community college or tech program, but students must seek the help. But people don't. Reza goes out and checks in with the Bright Future students. He asks how it's going--I think it feeds into your self-esteem for someone to want to see how you are doing."

Later, Reza asked Crystal if she would like to donate to help other students--and she did. Then he asked her to join the Bright Future Dollars for Scholars Board; she joined in 2010.

What is her take on the Board's current project to raise funds to expand the Bright Future program to at least one other campus? She says, "It is highly necessary. The statistics show that Bright Future works. Donating to this fund is not wasted money!" Crystal herself is additional proof!