Living With Gusto: Meet Christopher Latin, College Pathways Scholar

Meet College Pathways scholar, Christopher Latin, an English major with a love for words and poetry. Thinking that going to college wasn’t possible, Christopher grew up surrounded by negativity. Now he’s on the path to academic success. Read more about his story below, in his own words, and why he desires to change his name.

School: Huston-Tillotson University
Declared Major: English
Hometown: Needville, Texas

My name is Christopher Latin and I am an English major at Huston-Tillotson University. I am a Tom Joyner scholar from Houston, Texas. I have spent most of my life with the idea of college in mind but had decided that it was a sort of chimera, a distant or unreachable goal. Yet, here I am, more than a month into my freshman year. I write poetry, perform spoken word and dance.  I plan to change my name to Kai Love Latrice Latin because I strongly believe that a name should either require the full use of the tongue or mean something that holds weight. Kai means “the rushing water.” I am complex, I flow and I am ineffable. In short, I am human.

I went through plenty of negative situations growing up because of the people around me and the society in which I live, but regardless, I have grown to be non-judgmental and caring. I try to use my poetry and the way I live my life to get people one step closer to what I believe to be the fundamental truth of being human; no matter how much pain you go through, your life is the product of the beauty you give others.

I am thankful for the people around me because without them I would not be Kai. Job Corp’s College Pathways Program gave me the opportunity to do just that—exist—with gusto.

Cherie S. White
Cherie S. White
Cherie S. White is Director of Digital Strategy for the Tom Joyner Foundation, a writer and editor.

Leave a Comment