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Hi, my name is Adam Vinson. I’m here to give my story. Everyone in life has a story. Life is a journey. There are ups and downs. I hope today I can inspire you to live life to the fullest!

My past:

When I left college for the first time at Bob Jones University in 2012 I fell into a deep depression, no job, and had suicidal thoughts. I ended up in a mental hospital. That really affected me. It was a challenge just to wake up in the morning.

My present:

I found Gateway in 2013 and it changed my life! I still remember my first day. Randy Redlinger, now the executive director, gave me a tour of Gateway in 2013. He was very nice and made me feel welcomed. It gave me purpose and a reason to live. Gateway has helped me find jobs, go back to school, and being able to make friends for a lifetime. I have been able to work at Furman University in 2013, MetLife in 2014, and Burlington Coat Factory in 2015. At Furman University, I worked in a dish room for three hours every day. I learned a strong work ethic and discipline in this job. At MetLife, I learned great organizational skills. At Burlington Coat Factory, I learned how to work together with fellow members in a work environment. Working helped prepare me for school. I have learned routine and structure through work and school.

I also got an apartment through Gateway in 2013. I have a place I can now call home. I have great neighbors who care about me. I also have taken advantage of education. I have attended Greenville Tech, a local college in Greenville. Also, in June 2018, I had the opportunity to travel to St. Louis on behalf of Gateway. It was for colleague training. I learned a lot about how a clubhouse is supposed to operate. I was there for 2 weeks and I will never forget this experience. I would like to help other clubhouses around the world.

My future:

I’m continuing my education toward receiving a Bachelors’s degree. I hope furthering my education opens a lot of doors for me. My future looks bright! A famous basketball coach Jimmy V. said, “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up!” I hope you all have been inspired and that it has had a positive impact on your lives.