The chance to go to college once seemed out of reach for Daisy Zheng.
"My family is not that wealthy and back then, I really doubted my ability to go to college," Zheng said.
But the high school sophomore says thanks to Breakthrough New York, she found the confidence to pursue her dreams.
Breakthrough New York is a non-profit organization that's been around for nearly 20 years in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Manhattan.
It works on a "students-helping-students" model.
Volunteers -- many who are in high school -- give educational support to low-income kids from middle school through college.
And it's all for free.
"This program made me see a future for myself," Zheng said.
Now Zheng is hoping to help others feel the same way.
She volunteers with the non-profit twice a week.
She tutors students in math and mentors them as they navigate through high school.
"Kids do get help with their homework. They also get help with all sorts of things related to their lives, their community, their futures and that's the transformative power of that community and that sense of family," said Breakthrough New York Board Chair Bonnie Litt.
Some students say young people like Zheng are an inspiration and proof that Breakthrough New York can open doors.
"If you are a minority or you do have a difference, none of that matters here. This is one of the best places to have a difference because you are just embraced with open arms," said Jade Walker, a student.
"A lot of people come to this country with dreams and they don't necessarily know how to execute them. I believe Breakthrough gave me the tools to at least be on a path toward reaching my goals," said Jailene Peralta, a student.
And for Zheng, that goal is to one day become a teacher.
"We want everyone to be happy and to accomplish a dream or a goal they had since they were a kid," Zheng said.
And so for guiding other students on a path toward success, Daisy Zheng is our New Yorker of the Week.