GREENSBORO, N.C. — We are wrapping up our week-long series highlighting stellar graduates in our community with a student who knows a lot about perseverance.
Mia Lerner grew up in a home with a parent struggling with addiction. She often took care of herself and her sister, and it was tough. But now those hard times are paying off.
Mia graduated from the Penn-Griffin School for the Arts this week and now she's headed to UNC-Chapel Hill to major in Journalism and Theatre!
Mia joined WFMY News 2's Tracey McCain on the Good Morning Show to talk about those hard times and also what she learned from her family struggles.
"My mom struggled with addiction, she was a severe alcoholic which was really tough for me and my sister, but also my father struggled with multiple illnesses," explained Mia. "He was very sick throughout my childhood as well. Both of my parents were unavailable for a large majority of my childhood for a variety of reasons most of which were not their own fault which means my sister and I had to take care of our own education. But today my mother has been sober for five years and my dad is in really great health, so those struggles have allowed me to find a voice for myself and my community and also to have a lot of material to draw from whenever I want to write or do theater or anything that I want to do that will allow me to use my voice."
Mia uses her voice in our community by taking a stand against gun violence and addiction. She volunteers at the Caring Service Center offering other children support and comfort as they deal with a parent's addiction. Mia has also supported the 'Never Again Movement' and 'March for Our Lives' campaigns following the shootings in Parkland, Florida.
She took lead in her high school's effort to promote change in gun violence by organizing a performance by her peers to promote unity.
Those are just some of her many accomplishments, but Mia has a very bright future ahead. The High Point native heads to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill this fall on a full scholarship! Congratulations, Mia!
Other great graduation stories of amazing Guilford County Students: