Girl who was born in prison 18 years ago defies all the odds and will now study at Harvard


Against all odds and expectations, a young woman born in a prison has successfully been accepted into the prestigious Harvard University.

Sky Castner, who is 18 years old, is rumored to have entered this world within the confines of the Galveston County Jail.

Ever since Sky’s father took her home from jail to raise her on his own, her mother, who was in prison at the time of her birth, has not played a major part in Sky’s life.

Even with the many moves Sky and her father made when she was young, the ambitious young woman never lost sight of her goal to go to Harvard. Born in a prison 18 years ago, Sky recently placed third in her class at Conroe High School, securing her spot at one of the most prestigious law schools in the world.

According to the Courier, Sky began her application letter to Harvard by stating, “My birth took place in a prison.”

Sources cited by The Houston Chronicle reveal that during her time in elementary school, Sky was an avid reader and a standout student academically, even at a young age. However, the faculty at Reaves Elementary believed that in order for her to reach her maximum potential, she would benefit from some extra guidance and mentorship.

Mona Hamby, from CISD’s Project Mentor, came to help. She had a conversation with the Sky Courier. She said, “I received a document about her. Her role model was Rosa Parks, she enjoyed tacos from Dairy Queen, and she had a passion for reading. I felt like she was a smart young girl. I still keep that document to this day.”

It is believed that Mona and Sky bonded due to their lack of knowledge about each other’s mothers.

Mona mentioned that the girl told her she had been to jail. Mona didn’t believe it and knew she needed to do more than just have lunch with her once a week.

Sky received guidance from her mentor on selecting her initial pair of glasses, getting her first salon haircut, and enhancing her leisure activities.

Sky explained that the environment they grew up in was quite different, but that wasn’t necessarily a negative thing. They acknowledged the value of everything they had learned from Mona, as well as the experiences they had before meeting Mona.

Sky’s interest in attending Harvard only grew after seeing the campus with Mona and her husband in 2022. She asked Boston University’s Professor James Wallace for advice on her application.

“He helped me to tell my story in the best way possible,” Sky told the Courier.

Wow! What a motivating tale. I don’t know about you, but I’m incredibly happy for Sky. Please let us know if you agree that Sky did a great job of defying the odds.

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