John Jimenez

Last updated: 2011

John Jimenez

2011 Beat the Odds Honoree

From an early age, John Jimenez exhibited incredible grace under fire. Following the birth of a brother with cerebral palsy, John’s family faced insurmountable medical expenses that financially devastated the family and eventually led to his parents’ divorce. When his father left the home, John became the “man of the house” and, in many ways, took on responsibilities of an individual twice his age. John’s mother struggled to find work as the family often survived, for days at a time, on nothing more than a single bag of potatoes.

During this time of great financial strain, John honed an entrepreneurial spirit that remains one of his greatest assets. John began selling bead bracelets at school and learned critical business skills that allowed him to become more self-reliant. When John’s mother stopped receiving unemployment benefits, the crafty high school student began work at a local Tae Kwon Do Dojo to help support his family. From this experience, John has learned discipline, control, and dedication—the very skills that have helped him maintain a 4.2 GPA and ranking of 4 out of 738 students in his junior class. As a junior at Nathaniel Hawthorne High School, John takes several AP courses, and has been a service-oriented leader both in his school and in his community.

John’s life experiences have strengthened his resolve to attend a top tier business program where he will major in Business Management and minor in Marketing. John believes, “my family’s struggles fostered my ambitious attitude and goal oriented mindset…These experiences allowed me to see that anyone could achieve success, all one must do is beat the odds.”