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Multitasking just one talent for self-reliant teenBy Chris Ramirez
Moses Christian has had to grow up pretty fast.
At 18, he's worked two years at the same fast-food restaurant and helps take care of his younger brother.
And he does it all while holding down a solid relationship with his high school sweetheart and splitting time in high school sports.
Moses' ability to multitask while staying focused on his career goals will be rewarded this month when he joins hundreds of other students in graduating from Palo Duro High School.
He has held down passing grades and a 20-hour-a-week job at Whataburger. Such pressures give little way to spare time. But, when he's had it, he has suited up for the Dons' football and track squads.
And then there's sketches, hundreds of them he has doodled over the years.
Keeping him in line in that time has been his girlfriend, Dupree Cummings, who also attends Palo Duro.
Moses concedes he had a lot of forces working against him.
His father is in prison in Colorado and isn't in the picture. He and his brother Johnathan, 16, were removed from their mother's custody.
They now live with their 82-year-old uncle, Chester Graves. Moses credits Graves with forging his sharp sense of self-reliance.
"He has taught me that I've got to provide my own way, to do for myself," Moses said. "No one's going to give you anything in life. You've got to do for yourself."
Moses plans to attend Amarillo College in the fall to pursue either an engineering or radiology degree.
He wants to be a radiologist, so he can work with patients while also nourishing his science interests.
"I've always been pretty good in sciences and knowing about the human anatomy," Moses said.
But his body of knowledge doesn't stop there.
He also has prowess with electronics and auto work. So he could multitask yet again.
If he does, he has supporters backing him.
"It looked like everything was against him, but he's succeeding," said Janice Molden, his stepgrandmother. "He knows how to succeed in life."
Editor's note: Beating the Odds is a series published in the Amarillo Globe-News from May 10-24 that tells the stories of all kinds of students who are graduating despite challenges they've faced. It is part of Celebrate Education, a program designed to bring awareness to the need of educational attainment in the Texas Panhandle.
Copyright 2008 Amarillo Globe-News :: Amarillo.com