Mr. Abraham’s passion for learning and his essential philosophy of life are already serving him well as he begins computer science studies at the University of Texas at Dallas.
Asked in his Opportunity Rising scholarship application to list three adjectives that best describe him, he noted “responsible,” “self-motivated” and “mensch,” a person of integrity and honor. He thrives as the good guy who helps people out — in sports and in life — whether it’s showing good sportsmanship or seeking ways to lift up others.
“I feel like the meaning of life is to enjoy it,” Nahome says. “And helping people in need is helping the people in need enjoy their lives. So, I help others enjoy their life like I want to enjoy my life, by spending time with my family and close friends.”
In his first semester, Nahome is taking computer science classes, Calculus and English, with the goal of learning everything he can about the computer science field, including exploring the booming gaming industry.
Nahome doesn’t hesitate when asked about what he’s passionate about: Learning and soccer. “Ever since I was young, I’ve always enjoyed learning and school, and playing soccer, so they go hand in hand for me,” he says. “I’ve always been a student athlete. So whenever I’m playing soccer it motivates me in school, and when I’m in school it motivates me in soccer.”
Embracing that balance has helped him succeed in academics, graduating in the top 10% of his class and achieving exceptional scores, particularly in math, on his SAT and ACT college admission tests. As a member of the AVID (Advance Via Individual Determination) program at Naaman Forest High, he took the tests, and his studies, seriously. “I had many motivators that pushed me to study for the SAT for the college admission process and for scholarships,” Mr. Abraham says.
Nahome also excelled on the varsity soccer team in high school and with FC Dallas his junior and senior years. He’s continuing to pursue both of his passions at UT Dallas, as he’s also playing for the UT Dallas soccer team. Normally a fall sport, the season was moved to spring because of COVID-19.
Team spirit and camaraderie inspire him most about playing soccer. “It’s more about enjoying the time you have together than trying too hard. I feel like we just do better that way rather than focusing too much” on the pressure.
He’s contributed to his community in many ways including as a volunteer for Race for the Cure and Mission Arlington Thanksgiving, among other activities.
For Mission Arlington, his friends and family would get up early on Thanksgiving Day, drive to Arlington to pick up turkey and all the trimmings and deliver the boxes of food to apartments where people had applied for it. Then they would share the rest of the boxes with the homeless.
“I love the feeling of helping others. I know it’s the right thing to do to help people in need, especially on holidays,” Nahome says.
He learned about the Opportunity Rising scholarship from his older brother, Marone Abraham, who received an Opportunity Rising foundation scholarship in 2015 and is now returning to graduate school in architecture.
In high school Nahome was involved with National Honor Society and Afriklub, a social club where the group would discuss Africa and current events. A trip to Eritrea to visit family before seventh grade inspired a love of travel in Nahome as well as an understanding that not everyone lives the way we do here.
“One of the main things I’d like to do is travel the world with my friends and family,” he says. “When we went back home to visit our cousins, they were all curious about America and desire to come here. It’s their dream. I want to help my family out. It feels like it’s my duty to graduate and get a good job to help them.”