Student Strives to Help Victims of Abuse, Wins Live your Dream Award

Brittany Foster hugging

Brittany Foster understands the struggles, the fear, and the difficulties of overcoming abuse.

The 29-year-old survived an abusive relationship that she said nearly drove her to give up. Instead, she used the experience to forge a path to help others.

“Ever since then I feel like you don’t know what it’s like unless you are a victim yourself,” she said. “I felt I had a calling to help other victims, to give them a voice instead of leaving them to get that victim mentality of, ‘I can’t do this. This happened to me, I’m going to be miserable’.”

Foster said she the experience did leave her miserable and hurting. Therapy helped pull her from the darkness and now as a student at Bryant & Stratton College she is working to do the same for others.

This year Foster was awarded Bryant & Stratton’s Soroptimist: Live your Dream Award, which includes $1,500 in education money. The accolade recognizes students who are driven by a deeper inspiration to make an impact on their communities. Foster said she was stunned when she received the call that she had won.

“It’s something you least expect and it’s wonderful,” she said.

Foster, an online student from Kansas, said she hopes to work in a special victim unit or become a juvenile corrections officer. She began her educational journey studying radiology but reassessed her goals after suffering personally.

“When stuff like that happens, it changes the course of your life,” she said. As Foster rebuilt her plans she was also inspired by her four children, including a special needs child and a newborn, to keep on track. 

“It makes you want to try better. You want to show your kids that no matter what life throws at you, you can do it,” she said. “I think my children saved me more than anything.”

One of her largest cheering sections through the years, she said, has been the staff at Bryant & Stratton.

“I don’t know what I would do without my instructors,” she said. “They stuck by me and didn’t give up on me.

“I really love this school,” she said. “Some days I don’t think I can do it but then remember my goal and push myself. The students here, single moms, single dads, all their stories make me want to cry. We are all doing it.

“You can do it if you put your mind to it,” she said.

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