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Samantha Inkster: New Beginnings

 

As many of you may know, Hurricane Harvey was a disastrous event that affected many people in south Texas. A lot of people lost their homes, belongings, and loved ones. Some people evacuated while others weren’t so lucky. Samantha Inkster, who transferred from the University of Texas at Arlington, was slated to attend Texas State University (TXST) when the storm rolled in.

Samantha Inkster, a junior Biochemistry major, was living off campus in an apartment while enrolled at Texas State. During Hurricane Harvey, her unit was flooded and she had nowhere to live. She heard about the emergency transfer program UNT was offering for affected students and applied. Luckily, she was able to transfer to the University of North Texas to continue her education.

Inkster wasn’t fond of Texas State while she was there — it neither felt like home nor welcoming. “I felt out of place and the people weren’t as welcoming as they could’ve been,” she said. “It was hard transitioning and being far from my friends and family.”

At UNT, she feels she can receive a better education and have a better college experience. She is currently taking 13 hours so she can find a job to get back on her feet. However, she still faces a daunting circumstance.

Since financial aid was already distributed to her, it’s her responsibility to return it all to TXST. On top of that, Inkster also has to pay her tuition at UNT. She’s “drowning” in about $20,000 of debt while waiting for her UNT aid. She set up a GoFundMe to help pay for the cost and welcomes anyone who wishes to share or donate to her campaign.

“I started [a GoFundMe campaign] to help me get back on my feet,” Inkster said. “If you see me on campus and want to donate, I’ll gladly accept. Other than that, you can donate through my link.”

Her friends are being incredibly supportive as she works on transitioning. Preston Scharff, a freshman at TWU, believes Inkster’s whole school situation is a mess. “She only went to one week of classes, so she shouldn’t have to pay for a whole semester’s worth,” Scharff said. “It’s totally bogus.”

Scharff is working through an unfortunate situation of his own, so hearing about what happened to Inkster made him feel terrible. However, he’s looking on the bright side: he’s excited that Inkster will be attending UNT, down the street from TWU.

Ulises Moreno, UNT freshman biochemistry major, is trying his hardest to help and support Inkster through her Texas State ordeal. He claims her situation devastates him. “I knew the hurricane was going to hit Texas pretty hard, but I had no idea it would actually affect me or anyone close to me, and the fact that Sam is one of my best friends makes everything worse,” Moreno said.

Moreno knew that Inkster didn’t like going to Texas State so mixing that with the hurricane leads him to believe that this is a worst case scenario. When he heard that she was transferring to UNT with their emergency program, he couldn’t be more happy for her. “It’s giving an opportunity to my friend to not only continue her education, but come to a really good school and basically come home to a place that she knows and loves, somewhere where her friends are, and a place she’s comfortable with,” Moreno said. “I completely respect her decision because why go somewhere you’re not happy?”

Being affected by a disaster like Hurricane Harvey can be a traumatic experience and not everyone may know how to cope with it, but Samantha Inkster is not letting it affect her. She took the initiative and is trying to get back on her feet. It may be difficult, but Inkster has a mindset that’s not going to stop her from getting her education and living her best life.

If you would like to donate to help Samantha Inkster, the link is down below. Any amount is greatly appreciated.

https://www.gofundme.com/harveyschool-expenses

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