May 24, 2018
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Foster Child is Given A Better Chance

About Malik Ben- Salahuddin

Member School: Choate Rosemary Hall
Hometown: BronxNY (formerly of KilleenTexas)
College Choice: Wesleyan University
A Better chance Judith Berry Griffin Award winner

Malik’s struggle to overcome adversity and excel in spite of that struggle is truly commendable. After his mother was deployed to Iraq and his father was arrested, Malik was separated from his siblings and placed in foster care. During this time Malik joined the JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) at Ellison High School. He served one year and attained the rank of Cadet Corporal. 

In fall 2006 Malik applied to become an A Better Chance Scholar. In the spring of 2007 he was accepted to Choate Rosemary Hall just in time for his junior year in high school. Despite ongoing family setbacks, Malik has persevered to become a valued and active member of his school community. He was selected to become a prefect after being on-campus for less than one year Currently Malik serves as the Treasurer of the Afro-Latino Student Alliance at Choate. 
Malik also has demonstrable academic talents. Currently a senior at Choate, Malik remains on the Dean’s List, which recognizes students who maintain excellence in all academic subjects. Further, Malik was honored as an Outstanding Participant for his participation in the National Achievement Scholarship Program. Malik has also demonstrated his commitment to issues of diversity, equity and access by participating in the Connecticut Student Diversity and Leadership Conference.  

Malik is also working to develop his talents as a visual artist, and he participated in the Full Circle Project during the summer of 2008.  This film and poetry master class trained students in storyboard development and film production. He was hired by the Edison Leadership Academy to design the Academy’s crest. 

Outside of his academic and extracurricular commitments, Malik has remained connected and dedicated to the mission and vision of A Better Chance, serving incoming Scholars as a Group Leader at the East Coast Orientation program and on the 2008 College Tour. In addition, he has been apprenticing at a barbershop in between terms back in New York and is currently licensed as an apprentice barber. He has used this new skill to demonstrate his entrepreneurial sensibilities by starting his own barber business at Choate. 

Malik has been offered admission to Wesleyan UniversityFordham University, the University of North CarolinaBoston University, and Amherst College, amongst others. He is considering a double-major in Studio Art and Film.


About A Better Chance: 

A Better Chance, a national nonprofit (based in NYC) that changes the life trajectory for academically talented youth of color via access to rigorous and prestigious educational opportunities for students in grades 6-12.   It is the he oldest and only national organization of its kind. Its mission is to increase substantially the number of well-educated young people of color who are capable of assuming positions of responsibility and leadership in American society.  A Better Chance carries out its mission through its signature College Preparatory Schools Program which annually recruits, places and supports about 500 Scholars at more than 300 Member Schools in 27 states.  A Better Chance has been opening the doors to greater educational opportunities since 1963. More than 12,000 A Better Chance Scholars have graduated from Member Schools. An overwhelming majority of Alumni have gone on to graduate from competitive colleges, graduate programs, or professional schools. A Better Chance distinguished Alumni now include leaders in business, law, medicine, government, education, and the arts. A Better Chance distinguished Alumni now include leaders in business, law, medicine, government, education, and the arts (like Deval Patrick, Governor of Massachusetts; Luis A. Ubiñas, President the Ford Foundation and Tracy Chapman, singer-songwriter and Grammy award winner). <>  is the link to the A Better Chance website. 

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