Scottie Gipson | KERA News

Scottie Gipson

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Four years ago, Scottie Gipson dropped out of high school. He was selling drugs. His dad was in prison. Hope was hard to find. But eventually, he got a job and went back to night school. We profiled Scottie and five other North Texas teens last fall in a radio/TV project called "Students Speak Out." Today, as part of KERA's American Graduate initiative, we catch up with Scottie -- on his graduation day.

Scottie Gipson wants to own his own business. And after dropping out for three years, he now knows he’ll need to finish high school and go to college to accomplish that goal.

Scottie didn’t have a very stable life as a kid. His father’s been in and out of prison; he says his mother didn’t really seem to care whether he went to school or not. Scottie dropped out at 15 and began using and selling drugs to make ends meet.