chris adams, a crc and honors alumnus, is a true community leader. he runs a non-profit educational organization. He is a civil rights activist and serves as the leader of the Sacramento chapter of the People’s Alliance for Justice. he provided community support around the stephon clark case. He helped get AB392 (California’s Life Saving Act) signed into law and was present at the signing of the bill.
Having graduated from CRC in the spring of 2019, Adams, now living in West Los Angeles, is studying for her bachelor’s degree in sociology at UCLA, where she continues her devotion to political activism and community service. Adams is also passionate about soccer. he started college after discovering that the college football career he envisioned for himself at the time would require a foundation in his own college education. As he explains, “I came to want to be a soccer coach and I just needed my bachelor’s degree for that. Getting my sociology degree will really help me with any of my future goals.”
one thing adams has learned from his defense work is how to work with a variety of people. given his experience with many diverse community groups in northern california during his time at crc and now with people in his growing community in los angeles, adams says he has been able to discover how different groups of people work with each other. he describes his recent education in and out of the classroom in terms of “learning a lot about how to interact with people. getting a degree will help me if i want to get into law school, getting a bachelor’s degree will help me do the things i want do with education and employment beyond where I am today.”
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Growing up, Adams claims he was never good at school, “I said I couldn’t do it,” Adams explains, commenting on his doubts. “I never thought I’d be an honors student. But then, I did really well for two semesters and was invited to join honors. I think you get a grade that you’re eligible. And it was ironic, because like I was saying that I couldn’t do it […] I got the notice. so when I was finally invited to the honors, I was scared at first. I was scared to challenge myself, I thought if I took the honors, my GPA would drop and I wouldn’t get into the universities”. But Adams’ successful transfer to UCLA underscores how CRC’s honors program opened doors for him and boosted his self-confidence.
Reflecting on her honors experience, Adams notes that “CRC’s honors program is really like a close-knit community: everybody knows each other, you’ll end up sharing a lot of the same classes. honors is not a requirement – [Participation in the program is optional], so everyone has chosen to be there: They want to challenge themselves. As Adams explains, “Most of these people wanted to go to college, and a lot of them end up going to those colleges. the honors community as a whole [has] bigger goals outside of their immediate experience. it’s a like-minded group: everyone understands that there is a lot of work, but we all try to help each other. we must openly share with each other without fear of judgment and help each other. we know it’s going to be difficult, so we all share this experience and we want to be there for each other. If we saw someone struggling, we had others there to make sure [we were] okay, to check on each other.” Reflecting further on the show, Adams notes the level of educational support the honors provide: “They can prepare you for any college.”
while adams is currently settling in los angeles, adams notes, “staying active in sacramento is still important to me.” his focus is on continuing to grow his network of strong mentors. “I have been meeting with many professionals who have studied law and can give me much more information. Making a greater impact in the community at large is my immediate plan for the future.”
adams already has a non-profit organization called game changer. “It’s supposed to be able to train people with life skills, including how to interview, etiquette, study habits, ways to network. Eventually, I’d like to turn it into a general education prep school that offers counseling and other resources .there’s a grant I’m applying for to see what small steps I can start to take to make it bigger than it already is.” when asked how his time in the crc honors program contributed to his success, he replied, “i really got a great experience. i have to understand that if you do the work and challenge yourself and ask for help…ask for help is the main thing. just get down to work: you can do anything you set your mind to.”