Photo by Betsabeth Cacho Lopez
Ashanti Gardner is the most hardworking and ambitious student, a smart and creative thinker, driven and goal-oriented and always looking for ways to improve herself and her skills.
Her school and dance schedule keep her busy, but she also loves spending time with her loved ones. She has a special bond with her baby brother, whom she adores.
Ashanti’s passion is dancing — she has been dancing since she was 10 years old. She dreams of opening her own dance studio one day and sharing her love of dancing with others.
Ashanti’s biggest role model is her mother. They have a strong and loving relationship.
“From elementary school to sophomore year, my mom was my mother and father,” Ashanti said. “She played both roles and made me have an awesome life.”
Ashanti’s bond with her mother has played an important role in shaping her identity and values, and has been a key source of strength and support throughout her life.
Always encouraging her to pursue her passions and dreams, she taught Ashanti the importance of being kind, empathetic, and passionate towards others.
“She always motivates me to be the best to my potential,” Ashanti said.
People have different ways of expressing their emotions. Senior and close friend Amel Holliman said that Ashanti’s kindness comes through in the way she behaves toward others and supports them. Friends say she also listens attentively when someone needs to talk.
“Although Ashanti may not always show it, she’s a very kind person,” Amel said.
Ashanti’s dream of opening a dance studio is also a way she hopes to express kindness because she sees the value in creating a positive environment for others.
Ashanti will take her kind and creative spirit to Paul Mitchell School in Modesto in the fall.