29-year-old FMU student graduates top of the class

caines | 1/4/2012, 7:30 a.m.

Graduating from high school then going off to college is a reality for many students across the country. However, the story doesnt always work out the same for everyone. Jonte Myers, 29, who recently graduated with a 4.0 grade point average from Florida Memorial University (FMU), began his undergraduate experience when he was 27-years-old. At first I could not afford to come to school, he said. This is a journey that was about 12 years in the making. Financially it was difficult because my mother passed away when I was only 12-years-old. I was living with relatives and when they left I was basically on my own. I did a lot of growing up by myself. Myers is originally from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, lived in the British Virgin Islands for nine years and moved to the U.S. in 2009 to pursue a bachelors degree in exceptional student education. He currently lives in North Miami. Before coming to the states Myers had taken some college course in the islands and was teaching high school classes. When he made the transition to FMU he said the change wasnt pleasant. It was a nightmare, I had to sacrifice a lot, he said. I had lived on my own for maybe about nine or eight years. I had my own apartment, turned my own keys and cooked my own meals. But then to come here and have to share a room with a younger person it was a very unhealthy transition. Although he has enjoyed his experience at FMU he adds that the university wasnt his first choice. I did not intend to come to Florida Memorial, he said. I was planning to go to the University of the District of Columbia. I had friends there and they were trying to get me to come back to school. Two days before I completed the application to come there the tuition doubled. Around that same time I went to a college fair with my students and I was recruited by FMU at a college fair. By Randy Gricergrice@miamitimesonline.com