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TRAMEKA POPE: From Homeless Teen Mom to High School Valedictorian with over $600,000 in scholarships


An 18-year-old high school mom, Trameka Pope, who struggled through many obstacles to emerge the best graduating student of the Wendell Phillips Academy High School, Chicago, Illinois, United States has been awarded lots of scholarships and is now a Master’s Degree holder.

Trameka Pope was homeless in grade school, pregnant in eighth grade, and gave birth to her daughter just three days before starting high school.

But instead of giving up on her dreams, Trameka Pope worked hard to excel in her studies and extracurricular activities. She became the valedictorian of her senior class at Wendell Phillips Academy High School in Chicago.

After her outstanding high school performance, Trameka was offered admission into 25 colleges with all of them offering a scholarship award worth over $610,000. She however said she planned to attend the Western Illinois University in Macomb, Illinois, United States.

“I always said that I wanted to make change and I wanted to be in the history books, and I started with myself,” She told Fox 3.

I didn’t give up. I pushed myself hard. And my baby motivated me every day because I wanted to provide for her and I also didn’t want to be a statistic,” she added.

Trameka Pope

Trameka thereafter enrolled for her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Health at Western Illinois University. She graduated with her Degree honours in 2018.


Immediately after concluding her Bachelor’s Degree program, she enrolled for her Master’s Degree also in Public Health and was awarded her Master’s Degree in 2021.

Trameka defied the odds with the help of her supportive family, teachers, counselors, and mentors. She also had a strong motivation to provide a better future for her daughter. She said, “I always said that I wanted to make change and I wanted to be in the history books, and I started with myself.”

Trameka took college prep classes at Kennedy-King College while attending high school. She was also a cheerleader, a member of the National Honor Society, and a prom queen. She applied to nearly 30 colleges and was accepted by most of them. She chose to attend Western Illinois University, where she plans to major in social work.

Her achievements are remarkable not only for a teen mother, but for any student. She is an example of resilience, determination, and excellence. She deserves to be celebrated for her accomplishments and encouraged to pursue her goals. She is a role model for other young women who face similar challenges and aspire to higher education.

Trameka Pope is proof that anything is possible with hard work, dedication, and support. She said, “You can’t let your situation define you. You have to make your situation better.”


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