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STARRLYN AMORI BROWN (17) was born in Inglewood, California, and raised in South Los Angeles by a single mother with whom she and her two younger sisters currently reside.  Beyond the danger and challenges of daily life in South Los Angeles, Starrlyn has learned to see the beauty in her community, its people, and their stories. She says she wants to be “a giver” to others, as her mother has been to her, and states, “The ugly in the streets are what motivate me to be not only a success story for my community, but also part of the change I want to see.”

In elementary school at Raymond Avenue, Starrlyn was recognized as gifted.  She was at the top of her class all 4 years at Kipp Academy middle school and, as valedictorian, received an academic scholarship to attend the Archer School for Girls, where she discovered both a talent and passion for basketball, and graduated with a 3.8 GPA. Combining her dream of helping others and her love for sports, Starrlyn has decided to pursue a degree in Psychology with a minor in Kinesiology.  She will be attending HBCU Fort Valley State University in the fall 2021.  Her ultimate goal is a PhD in Psychology and a private practice as a Sports Psychologist, being positioned to employ others. 

 

REGARDING THE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN, Starrlyn says, “The Airmen have ultimately taught me that the first step to success is courage.” She states, “I intend to turn my dreams into my reality regardless of how long or how much hard work and dedication it takes.” Her High School counselor wrote, “I admire Starr’s strength of will and resiliency. She is clear in her mission: she hopes to translate her professional success into a better life for her mother and two younger sisters…” and “…I know she will continue to use her voice and her tenacity means that nothing can get between her and success.”  Her advisor added, “As a board member of our Black Student Organization, Starr has led and contributed to rich discussions around race, culture, and how we can all stand together to create a just world…I have always been so proud to say that I advise such a talented, hardworking, and passionate young woman. She will be an asset to any institution as she has been throughout her time at Archer.”

 

Starrlyn’s High School Math Department Chair described her as “that calm, curious and driven student that stands out from the rest,” and “she was consistently a strong math student, one who caught on to concepts quickly and was eager to think deeply about challenging topics…her confidence and maturity made her stand out as a natural leader in her group work and a helpful classmate to those who may be struggling.”  He writes, “Starr Brown is that student every teacher wants to have because she is a life-long learner,” “she pushes to know more” and “is a real academic!” While maintaining a 3.76 GPA at the Archer School for Girls, during the summer of 2020, Starrlyn worked with the South Los Angeles Movement Youth Coalition, a group of teens that met monthly to discuss issues within their community and ideas about how to improve the community they live in, for the current generation and those to come. She also worked for the 2020 census through a female empowerment group engaged in outreach and discussion of the implications of being counted.  In addition to being on the varsity basketball team, Starrlyn ran hurdles for the track team and earned a Tommie Smith Youth Initiative Award (TSYI: a community organization offering athletic opportunities and educational development for marginalized youth), for her academic and athletic achievements. Starrlyn’s other extracurriculars and community service include the following:

 

  • Archer School Black Student Union (Executive Board member)

  • Athletic Leadership Council

  • Archer School Track and Field

  • The LA Jets Track and Field Club

  • EST Black college Tours (provided clerical office support)

  • YEPP Student Advocate (peer anti-drug education)

  • South Los Angeles Movement (SLAM) Coalition (substance use prevention advocacy)