SENIOR PROFILE: 'God and the struggle' kept him going

May 10, 2018

PROFILE joshua johnson
Shakeal Paul

Every morning starting at 7, he begins with a quick breakfast and looks at the news.

Shakeal Paul has always been a positive person, even when trouble seemed to always come his way.

A few miles from the campus, he begins his routine walk to the school every day, where he takes a full load of classes in his final year of college. After a full day of studies, he makes his way to the call center to keep a little change in his pocket.

“It isn’t as easy as it seems,” Paul says. He is trying to fulfill a dream in teaching as this has been something he has had on his mind for quite some time.

It seemed like forever ago when Paul’s father passed away. He was just a young boy. It was the lack of the father figure that drove him to always stay focused on his grind.

After countless years of lessons and learning, he will be graduating from Claflin with honors.

“I’ve learned never to dwell on too much of anything,” Shak says.

As a child, he was never around too much of anything positive. Having to see a single mother raise him, his younger sister built a fire in him. He thinks seeing these things growing up is what keeps him going toward success.

“I’ve seen the bad, I’ve been at my worst. Nothing can stop me from actually getting to where I want to be after all the trouble I seen,” he says.

Before coming to Claflin, Paul was unsure what he really wanted to do in life. Thoughts of basketball and the Air Force ran through his mind, but they hardly ever seemed to be a real plan for him. It took him three years after high school to finally decide to go to college and pursue a degree in education.

“I think this best fits me. I grew up without that father figure there to teach and show me guidance, so I want to be there for these children to show them what I didn’t have.”

Upon graduation, Paul has secured a teaching position in the Las Vegas area.

“It was nothing but God and the struggle that kept me going,” he said.


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