Michael spent 6 years in the Ohio foster care system. Due to abuse, Michael entered foster care where he was over-medicated instead of receiving more appropriate forms of therapies. Refusing to live down to expectations, Michael focused his sights on higher education and paving a way for others to succeed. Currently, Michael is majoring in Geographic Information Sciences and minoring in Meteorology at Ohio University and after graduation this Spring, he will pursue a Master's in City and Regional Planning at the Ohio State University. As a founding member and current peer mentor for the Ohio Reach program on campus, Michael supports foster youth reaching for high education. He is also an active member of the Ohio Youth Advisory Board, serves as a POWER/GAMMA Peer Health Educator for the Ohio University Office of Health Promotions, was a 2015 Congressional Foster Youth Shadow, and facilitated the very first Thanksgiving dinner for current and former foster youth in southeast Ohio. Michael's ultimate goal is to create and manage transitional housing for LGBTQ foster care youth, and to support their struggles with identity, self image, sexuality, and relationship issues.