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Ti’Sharon Thompson is Indianapolis Metropolitan’s 2017 Outstanding Student Achiever.

A native of Oklahoma, Ti’Sharon moved to Indiana to live with her aunt. She discovered Indianapolis Metropolitan High School her junior year.

On a typical day, Ti’Sharon carries a full schedule at school, attends basketball practice, then goes to work – often arriving home late. She is also actively involved with her church.

“When I’m struggling to balance everything, I try to stay focused on why I’m doing it,” said Ti’Sharon, who plans to major in biochemistry. “I know I have a future ahead of me, and it’s all just part of the daily push of getting through high school to get to college.”

An accomplished student, her teachers quickly recognized her work ethic and natural abilities.

“Ti’Sharon really excelled in my chemistry class,” said Eric Sprague, a teacher at Indianapolis Metropolitan High School. “She was a great student leader.”

With guidance from the leadership team at Indianapolis Metropolitan, Ti’Sharon won a Lilly Endowment Scholarship, which will pay her full tuition for four years at an accredited Indiana college, plus an additional $900 per year for books and equipment.

“Many students have to work while they go to college, but the scholarship allows me to focus on school,” said Ti’Sharon.

“We know our students very well,” said Christina Lear, Assistant Principal at Indianapolis Metropolitan. “We know their academic profiles, their goals, and what motivates them, so when an opportunity comes up, we can target the right students and guide them in the application process.”

Ti’Sharon will be the first person in her family to attend college.

“My family is really grateful for the Lilly Endowment Scholarship because it takes a huge financial burden off our shoulders,” said Ti’Sharon.

Her top three schools of interest are University of Evansville, Indiana University and Indiana State University. Inspired by the birth of her twin nephews and their time spent in the intensive care unit, she plans to become a pediatrician.

“I consistently choose to do better and challenge myself,” said Ti’Sharon. “I’m going to miss high school, but I’m ready to experience the next stage of life.”

She encourages other students seeking an alternative high school experience to consider Indianapolis Metropolitan.

“Indy Met is open to everyone,” Ti’Sharon said. Her advice to other students is: “Stay focused, try your best, and Indy Met will help you be successful.”