What was it like to be growing up in a multi-cultural family?
Jonathan's parents were Chinese and Korean, and at the time, his parents were not allowed to get married; it was seen as a very shameful thing. Jonathan ended up living with his mom, and had only met his dad recently, at the young age of 49.
What was it like for Jonathan to meet a birth parent as an adult ?
He wondered, "Will I like him?" or "Will I see him as a complete drag?" and considered many other questions. Jonathan has always viewed himself as an outsider in life. With his birth father showing back up in his life, in some ways that took away part of his story because he now has more of a sense of belonging.
Does Jonathan Sposato value education ?
Absolutely. With a Chinese mom and Italian father who adopted him when he was young, there was no escaping it. Anything lower than an "A-" grade was not acceptable as his parents had high expectations for him.
Now that Jonathan is a parent, he realises that part of pushing kids to achieve high marks and extracurricular achievements is driven, at least in part, by a parent's ego and a desire to see them succeed.
How did Jonathan Sposato go from a struggling kid who got bullied to a rising star?
Jonathan figured out that other kids were just insecure, and if he could get good at various activities, like sports and music, and could become a popular kid, and put himself in a position where he was admired, not bullied.
Where did Jonathan Sposato go to college?
Jonathan looked all over for schools. He applied to Harvard, Stanford, and many other Ivy League schools and was rejected. He says life is still ok if you don't get into those institutions! Whitman College rolled out the red carpet for him and made him feel wanted.
What did Jonathan pursue at Whitman?
Relationally, he had friends from all over and found it very fulfilling. Academically, he was tracking to be pre-law at Whitman and had his eyes on Columbia Law School. His academic advisor questioned him on whether he REALLY wanted to be a lawyer, which sent Jonathan down the path of trying to determine where he wanted to go in life.