SANTA FE, NM (WCMH/CNN) — An 18-year-old is showing the world that hard work and determination can make all the difference in life.
Edgar Sarceno spent most of his formative years on his own. By his junior year of high school, he was living out of his car, with no family support.
“My whole life was in my trunk basically,” he told KOAT.
Sarceno worked multiple jobs to get by, but he never let his grades slip and he kept it a secret that he was homeless.
“It was really hard to not be the person that makes everybody sad,” he said.
Even Sarceno’s boss at Reading Quest, a non-profit where he spent countless hours over the last year helping kids learn to read, never knew about Sarceno’s situation.
“He was always on time, always impeccably dressed and looked terrific and was on his game every time,” Rayna Dineen told KOAT. “The kids were madly in love with him.”
It wasn’t until Sarceno started applying to colleges and asked an English teacher to edit his application essay that his secret came out.
“I think what saved my life was reaching out,” he said.
After a lifetime of overcoming adversity, Sarceno has a full-ride scholarship to Bates College in Maine.
“I want to study philosophy, I want to study art and economics, reading and writing,” he said. “Now I feel like I have the chance to chase whatever is in my heart.”