The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

All about Emma

Emma Snuggs (pictured here with her son Michael) ran for Homecoming queen this fall. ||Kristen Stauss||
Emma Snuggs (pictured here with her son Michael) ran for Homecoming queen this fall. ||Kristen Stauss||[email protected]

Emma Snuggs is a 25-year-old Native American, single mother and City College student who puts all the stereotypes associated with each of those designations to rest.

Snuggs says she found out that she was pregnant during the summer after her junior year in high school. Though the pregnancy forced her to leave school, she tested out with a diploma.

“I never had what you would consider a normal high school experience,” Snuggs says. “But it’s sink or swim, and I guess I chose to swim.”

Snuggs juggles her 18-unit class load, her Indigenous Peoples Club membership, volunteering at the disability research center, Phi Theta Kappa, Honors Club and being a mother with what she humbly considers good time management.

“I just have a can-do attitude,” says Snuggs. “I have an excellent support system and I have my native brothers and sisters.”

Snuggs has a 7-year-old son, Michael, whom she lovingly calls her “lucky baby,” since he was born at 7:07 p.m. and weighed 7 pounds, although he suffers from severe asthma that hospitalizes him at least twice a year.

“For the past two years we have sat at the table and done our homework together,” Snuggs says. “He does his, and I do mine, it’s kind of fun.”

Snuggs has received straight A’s for the past three semesters and says that everything she does, from school to motherhood are interconnected and she couldn’t do one without the other.
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“I couldn’t provide for my son if I didn’t do well in school and I can’t do well in school if I’m not providing for my son,” Snuggs says.

Snuggs also acts as the public relations officer for the Indigenous Peoples Club at City College and says she owes a lot to the club adviser, Tammy Cheshire.

“She’s amazing, she loves to bring people together,” says Indigenous Peoples adviser Tammy Cheshire. “She’s a great student, really motivated and very supportive of her fellow students; I’m really glad that she’s going to Sac City.”

Until this semester, Snuggs could not receive financial aid because of an outstanding student loan and has had to rely on the BOG Fee Waiver, which paid for her classes and the Washoe Tribe of Nevada in California that supplies $476 per month for books and expenses.

“I owe a lot to them,” Snuggs says. “They have helped me so much and I am very grateful.”

“She has gone to school and she has just rocked,” says Sakinah Bismillah, supervisor of the Tempory Assistane of Needy Families which cooperates with the Washoe Tribe of Nevada in California. “ She went from the person saying ‘I don’t know if I can do this’ to the person that calls me crying because she got an ‘A-’ in a class.”

“She’s truly dedicated and motivated to provide a better life for her son,” says Bismillah.”
Despite the struggles that Snuggs has endured she remains upbeat and hopeful about what her future holds. She hopes to transfer to Stanford with a major in law and minor in ethnic studies.

“I’m not fighting an uphill battle,” Snuggs says. “A teen mom can make it and make something of herself.”

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