Three Trinity College students are preparing to graduate with their degrees this week but their journey to the finish line began in the fifth grade.
Back in 2017, Giovanni Jones, Tiana Starks, and Kiera Flynn found out they would be attending Trinity College on full-ride scholarships. All three graduated from Global Communications Academy in 2017.
"We were literally trying to figure out how to pay for school," said Jones.
"This is something like I would've never thought of happened," said Starks.
"A lot of times there are barriers in the way of some students attending college," said Flynn.
The Hartford natives' friendship goes way back to the fifth grade and throughout the years, they've been able to learn and grow together.
"Those two women over there are so important to me and have been integral to my college experience," said Jones.
"We've known each other for all these years and it's amazing to see that we've grown closer," said Flynn.
The bond has allowed each of the graduating seniors to flourish in their respective fields.
Kiera is a neuroscience major with dreams of becoming an OBGYN within a prison system.
"It was important to me to make a difference in Black women's lives because a lot of times in health care they're neglected," said Flynn.
Tiana is a sociology major and plans to pursue a career in politics.
"I'll be doing what I love to do which is providing resources for Hartford residents," said Starks.
Giovanni is also a sociology major and has his sights on becoming a dentist but plans to get his master's in public health. He's also the first African American male from Hartford to be the president of the Student Government Association at Trinity College.
All three say they're grateful for their free education, their only hope is more students of color are given similar opportunities.
"A lot of times, black students they don't feel like they're capable and sometimes they may not have the money to go to school," said Kiera Flynn. "We're beating the stigma, like we're breaking those generational curses and hopefully we've opened up the door for future students to come here and thrive.
The "Trin" Trio are set to graduate on Friday on Trinity College's campus.