Humans of Manhattan Center: Jamal and Lizbeth

By Gabby Lawson

Human: Jamal Robinson


In this picture, is one of the many humans of Manhattan Center. Our human here is a Sophomore and based on the picture above, it’s quite obvious our human exudes a sense of swagger and confidence. Fifteen-years old and born May 10, he sports the zodiac sign of a Taurus. Confident, persistent, yet materialistic, Jamal fits the characteristics of a Taurus. Although the obvious traits are here, there is more to this human than meets the eye. Anyway, this is Jamal Robinson.

Since this human attends MCSM, it was only right to ask why he attends MCSM and what he likes about MCSM, what he doesn’t… etc. Jamal told me he does not like the fact MCSM gives a lot of homework but he understands the reasoning behind it.

Most of our Manhattan Center students know (and if you didn’t, know you will) that he is one of the star players of the Varsity basketball team. Although this is true, Jamal is not quite fond of the game. Surprisingly, he prefers the sport of football. He does not play the game for confidential reasons but you could say his heart lies on the football field rather than the basketball court.

Jamal’s favorite subject at MCSM is Mathematics, specifically Geometry. When I asked why exactly he is so fond of Geometry, he said he likes the fact that everyone struggles with it and he doesn’t. I went on further into the question to fully assess the character of our human here.

Do you like being able to do things that other people can’t?

I LOVE that feeling. I feel like I am better than those who don’t understand and I want to be better than people. That’s just my personality.

I went onto more basics and asked Jamal what his hobbies were. Straightforwardly he said, “I don’t have any hobbies.” In fact, he told me he doesn’t do the things he does because he wants to, he does them because he is forced.

He did manage to tell me that he does like to sleep. Another Taurus trait: laziness. He loves to shop and feels accomplished after buying quality items. A reason being is because our human here dresses to impress, literally. He dresses to impress the people around him as well as his close friends. His favorite thing to shop for is sneakers. No surprise for a ball player, adding the fact that he likes how people admire what he has.

How do you feel appearance?

Jamal: Appearance?

(laughs) Yes, appearance

Jamal: I feel appearance is one of the most important aspects of life.


Jamal: We all depend on others even though some of us may say we don’t. We all need other’s advice and opinions in order to become a better person. Appearances are your first thoughts on a person. It gives you a sense on how this person may act. People misjudge me all the time. When they see me, they think I’m your average black male. They think I came from Harlem, I live in the projects, and/or I hang out on the streets at night. But I’m not like that. I study, play basketball, and you know, I just strive to be a better person. Appearances can be bad or good.

You said appearances are the most important thing, but you also said people misjudge you. What do you really feel about appearances?

Jamal: Sometimes they can accomplish some good. Other times, they don’t.


Jamal: Appearance wise, I try to impress my friends but adults look at me as your average black male.

If those are your friends, why do you feel the need to impress them?

Jamal: Because those are the people who…

Who matter?

Jamal: Yes!

I asked Jamal to describe himself in about 5 words. I probably sat there for a good 10 minutes as he contemplated about himself. A jokester quality is prevalent in his character for he stared at the window, even adding, “I need to stare at the light, yellow doesn’t help me think,” trying to ignore the yellow walls that surrounded us.

After further thinking he told me that he considers himself smart, social/friendly, all the regular-degular answers. What was interesting was his last phrase: Sense of Integrity. I didn’t quite understand so I asked what he meant by that. He explained to me that he does and takes pride in the fact that he knows the difference between right and wrong, even when people aren’t watching.

An overall cool spirit with a confident attitude. That is our human, Jamal.

Human: Lizbeth Hernandez


This lovely human above us is Lizbeth. Lizbeth Hernandez. She is a sophomore at Manhattan Center for Science and Mathematics. She is 15 years old. Her birthday is November 12th, and she was born under the Water sign: Scorpio. The focused nature of a Scorpio is obvious in Lizbeth’s personality, as well as her easy-going way of speech.


I learned that in middle school, Lizbeth had an important relationship with her math teacher which can be attributed to the easier time she has in her mathematics classes. Math is also her favorite subject.


I asked Lizbeth what influenced her to apply to MCSM. Her reason being that the same Math teacher had filled out her high school application, putting all of the better schools for Lizbeth to attend. I asked if this teacher was a big influence in her academic life. She replied, Yes. I didn’t want to hit any sort of landmine by asking any further about this teacher but I had to know the significance this teacher had in Lizbeth’s life. I mean, filling out her application? I think that’s a big deal.

Do you think your teacher pushed you more than your own parents?

Lizbeth: Yea


Lizbeth: Say if I did badly on a test, I would go home and all my mom would say is do better. She’s not the type to help me with things like homework and things like that… I did it on my own. My teacher, she was strict, but she was looking out for my well-being. She pushed me because she saw my potential.

If you could change one thing about Manhattan Center what would it be?

Lizbeth: The homework! Too much homework! Then the teachers expect us to study and practice, as well. I mean, we do have lives.

Although, she is only a sophomore it doesn’t hurt to ask about people’s dreams and goals. Which is why I asked what our human here might what to be when she grows up. One thing for sure, it wasn’t an Astronaut. In fact, Lizbeth was planning on being a forensic scientist. She said after she looked up what you had to do to actually become a forensic scientist (first: cop, second: detective, and further on) she thought again about pursuing that career. As of now, she isn’t too sure. That’s perfectly okay though.

I asked Lizbeth to describe herself to me. She believes she is outgoing, likes to socialize, and considers herself very intelligent.

You tell me you like to socialize… Yet, when I asked you to do this interview, you initially said no. When I asked if it was because you were shy, you said yes. So how can you be shy and social at the same time? (laughs)

Lizbeth: (laughs) It was because I wasn’t sure what type of questions you were going to be asking and I didn’t know what people would be reading about me. But me, I’m the type of person that, If I see someone single themselves out, I will do my best to make them feel comfortable.  You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. You never know what the person is going to be like until you approach them.

She  also told me that she doesn’t care about others opinions and she’s not going to let others influence her taste or her mindset. Lovely isn’t she? I think so.

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