Detroit (WJBK) - Brittany Stults has had her fair share of mistakes with drugs and jail but the 21-year-old has now graduated and dreams of a bigger future for herself and her children.
"I finally accomplished something I never thought I was going to," Stults said.
With her 2017 tassel and tons of awards it's this moment that Brittany Stults of Detroit never even dreamed of. Graduating from Covenant House Academy in southwest Detroit, Stults is this year's outstanding senior with the highest GPA in her graduating class.
"She's been through a heck of a lot, she did a speech for us at our luncheon and broke down in tears," Covenant House Academy counselor Christine Jackson said,
Stults who has a one-year-old boy named Adam, is expecting her second boy in about three weeks. The young mother grew up in Grand Rapids and was in and out of foster care.
"It's hard. There's families that care about you and families that don't, and we don't get to pick where we go, we're just placed," she said.
By the age of 13, calling herself a "mess" she spent the next 8 years in and out of jail, stealing, and doing drugs.
"I really didn't care about anything, I wanted to do my own thing."
Stults says this August, another young woman inspired her, graduating while behind bars.
"I just got tired of that life and wanted to move on with myself and I wanted to be a mom to both of my kids," she said.
Covenant house academy southwest, unlike many schools.
"There's a lot of kids who fall through the cracks in Detroit and they try the alternate schools but sometimes age out," Jackson said.
The academy provides much more than coursework.
"If you need a nap, you can take a nap, if you need food to take home or some new socks because they got wet in the snow, or a jacket, or an umbrella or need help getting an ID, medical insurance."
Also hooking up students like Stults with Detroit Promise, providing two years of free college. That is where Stults plans to go next.
"she's going to believe in herself and she's going to teach her sons believe in themselves and she's going to do great things." Jackson said.
Because, as she says, no matter your circumstances, with a little hard work...
"There's always a better life out there," Stults said.
Stults plans to attend a community college studying science then transfer to Wayne State University to become an engineer.