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Los Angeles high school student's reaction to college rejection letter goes viral and inspires

A SoCal high school student's reaction to her college rejection letter goes viral and inspires
A SoCal high school student's reaction to her college rejection letter goes viral and inspires 03:14

A Torrance High School senior decided to get real with her social media followers and share a video of her reaction to a college decision letter that ended up being a rejection. Her reaction -- heartbreak, something she said has helped her followers as they are going through the same life experiences. 

Nicole Laeno said she's been doing social media since she was in sixth grade. "I've always wanted to share the real and raw stuff, so even before the college process I was like, yeah,  I am going to film all of my reactions whether its an acceptance or rejection."

Her dream school was UCLA. In her TikTok posted video, the 18-year-old is sporting a blue and yellow UCLA sweatshirt, with her family gathered around her. Her face quickly turns to sorrow as she finds out she is rejected from her top choice college. Laeno's more than five million TikTok followers got to see the raw emotion, and the video went viral. 

Nicloe Laeno TikTok

So why post such personal, raw emotions? Laeno said lot of her followers are around the same age, going through the same stage in life.

"Overall it was really cool because I got to relate to other seniors in high school, but also resonate with people who went through this process like 10 years ago, and got rejected from their dream schools," Laeno said. 

"But overall the response is really nice because people were just saying like, it's honestly the best thing that ever happened to them and they are in such a better place now. So I'm just really glad I got to share my story with a lot of people."

A lot of encouragement came her way, with people telling her the rejection is going to be a blessing. Laeno has already grown from the process, saying rejection is redirection. 

Laeno's new direction is San Diego. The senior will be attending San Diego State University in the fall, studying communications.

"You can't control your future, you can't control your past, what's meant for you is going to find you and vice versa, what's not is going to make it known it's not," Laeno said.

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