Winning Essay by Morgan Beard, Claflin University
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The immediate past President of the United States of America, Barack Obama, is undoubtedly one of the greatest African- Americans who managed to alter the course of history for the better. His life achievements are clear proof that anything is possible, provided an individual stays focused and committed towards his goals. Apart from his successes in the field of politics, which have inspired millions of other Americans, including me, Barack Obama has also proven to be a loving and caring family person.

Obama rose through the ranks to become the first, and so far, the only African-American president, in a time when there was doubt that such an achievement was possible. Amid numerous criticisms from both Republicans and fellow Democrats, Obama did not succumb to pressure and the obstacles that stood in his way. Instead of focusing on what was difficult, he opted to focus his aim on goals he could achieve. Riding on the famous phrase “yes, we can”, Barack Obama successfully rallied around millions of Americans and won their trust, which eventually landed him in the highest office in the United States of America. His political journey inspires me and continually reminds me that nothing is impossible despite how difficult the task may appear in the eyes of others. His achievements are also a constant source of encouragement, helping me to focus my energy on people who motivate me to keep going, instead of those who discourage me by speaking of the difficulty of the journey.

Obama also values his family, which includes his wife, Michelle Obama, and two children, Malia and Sasha Obama. Family is an essential dimension in the life of a human being, as it functions as the foundation of support throughout one’s journey. Family members need to support each other during the most challenging times, when even friends are absent from the picture. Obama’s family has served an important part in his political life by supporting him through every step of his career. During most of his speeches, the former US president, Barack Obama, never failed to mention the support shown by his wife and two daughters during his entire life, both on and off the political field. An example of this support is the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act that was enacted during his tenure. This was a cause that was important to the First Lady. By acknowledging the role that his family has played in his life, Obama has inspired me to embrace family values, and never to forget them even after achieving all my goals.

Barack Obama continues to be an inspiration not only to me but to millions of people all over the world. He was an outstanding leader who transformed lives through various policies that he approved during his time as US president. Whenever I have to face challenges that divert my focus from the primary goal, I remind myself of the hurdles that Obama faced in his journey towards becoming the president, and how he overcame them.

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