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micalyn ford

4505

Bold Points

1x

Nominee

1x

Finalist

1x

Winner

Bio

Hello, I'm Micalyn, a woman in her thirties, a blend of two cultures. Raised in a bustling household, I learned tenacity and diligence. Driven by personal healthcare experiences, I'm drawn to science and the medical field. Amid a harsh divorce, I faced racism, abuse, hunger, and financial strain. Undeterred, I aimed for a brighter future for my children and myself. Nursing beckoned, and I pursued a BSN degree, showcasing my resilience. I'm close to realizing my dream of becoming a nurse, a testament to unwavering mettle. As a mother and student, I inspire my children with the belief that diligence and spirit can turn dreams into reality. Nursing fuels my passion for making lives better. Grateful for the chance to chase my nursing dream, I'm determined to channel my experiences into a positive global impact. Thank you for considering my journey. I stand as a testament to resilience, passion, and transformative promise.

Education

Chamberlain University-Indiana

Bachelor's degree program
2021 - 2025
  • Majors:
    • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing
  • Minors:
    • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing

Bradley-Bourbonnais C High School

High School
2004 - 2008

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Hospital & Health Care

    • Dream career goals:

      director of nursing

    • customer service rep

      Home Appliance
      2015 – 20172 years
    • cna

      Riverside
      2011 – 20154 years
    • server

      mayberry cafe
      2020 – 20211 year
    • correctional officer

      Kankakee County Sheriffs Department
      2017 – 20203 years

    Sports

    Diving

    Junior Varsity
    2004 – 20084 years

    Soccer

    Varsity
    2000 – 20088 years

    Arts

    • Music
      2000 – 2008

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Volunteering

    Wieland Nurse Appreciation Scholarship
    My mother was my rock, inspiration, and guiding light throughout my childhood. Strong, resilient, and unwavering in love, she epitomizes being a strong woman. As a strong black woman married to a white man in the 1980s, she faced numerous challenges. Still, her unwavering determination and love left an indelible mark on me and inspired my journey into nursing. The defining moment came when my younger sister fell ill. For months, my mother tirelessly sought help for her, only to be dismissed by doctors who questioned her credibility and competence. Despite skepticism and adversity, my mother remained composed and determined to advocate for my sister's well-being. Eventually, she received a diagnosis of SCID, a condition akin to the "boy in the bubble" disease. This marked the beginning of a relentless battle during which my mother juggled multiple roles – as a full-time employee, a mother, and a caregiver. Witnessing my mother's dedication to my sister's care was humbling and awe-inspiring. She pursued knowledge relentlessly, educating herself on every aspect of my sister's condition while working tirelessly to provide the best possible care. Despite facing personal hardships, including the deterioration of her marriage and the challenges of single parenthood, my mother persevered. She worked multiple jobs, sacrificed sleep and sustenance, and pursued higher education to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN). My sister's passing at the age of 16 was a devastating blow to our family, but it reinforced my commitment to follow in my mother's footsteps. Her legacy of compassion, resilience, and dedication lives on through me. Working as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) in a rehabilitation nursing home, I discovered my passion for wound care. I immersed myself in learning from attending wound care specialists, eagerly absorbing knowledge and skills. My aspiration to become a wound care nurse is not merely a career choice but a testament to my dedication to making a difference in the lives of patients like my sister. I am fueled by a desire to validate the experiences of those who have been marginalized or overlooked, to be a voice for the voiceless, and to offer comfort and healing to those in need. Beyond providing exceptional medical care, I am driven to contribute to advancing medical knowledge and research. I dream of pursuing a doctorate in wound care and specialized diseases to honor my sister's memory and offer solace to my family by seeking answers and advancements in medicine. My mother's journey has taught me that nursing is more than a profession; it is a calling, a vocation rooted in empathy, compassion, and unwavering dedication. As I embark on this journey, I carry with me the lessons of resilience, the spirit of advocacy, and the commitment to excellence instilled in me by my mother. I am determined to honor her legacy by becoming the best nurse I can be, making a meaningful difference in my patients' lives, and bringing comfort and healing to those in need.
    Pangeta & Ivory Nursing Scholarship
    Growing up in a richly diverse community, I have been acutely aware of the profound impact that cultural backgrounds can have on individuals' experiences with healthcare. This awareness has ignited a passion within me to pursue a nursing career, not merely as a medical practitioner but as a bridge between cultures, ensuring that every individual receives effective healthcare that respects their unique backgrounds. In my formative years, I witnessed firsthand the challenges individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds face when navigating the healthcare system. Language barriers, lack of cultural competence among healthcare providers, and inadequate representation of diverse perspectives often lead to disparities in healthcare access and outcomes. These observations left an indelible impression on me and sparked a commitment to addressing these disparities through a career in nursing. As a profession, nursing places a premium on the values of empathy, compassion, and cultural competence. It is not merely about administering medications or implementing treatment plans; it is about understanding the nuances of each patient's cultural context and tailoring care accordingly. This realization has become the cornerstone of my aspiration to be a nurse who actively contributes to bridging the cultural gap in healthcare. Cultural competence in nursing is more than a set of skills; it's a mindset that acknowledges and respects the diversity of individuals' beliefs, values, and practices. As I embark on this nursing journey, I am committed to becoming a lifelong learner, continuously educating myself about various cultural backgrounds to provide care sensitive to each patient's unique needs. Moreover, I recognize the importance of advocating for policy changes within the healthcare system to embed cultural competence as a core component of nursing education and practice. By actively engaging in initiatives that promote diversity and inclusion, I aim to contribute to a healthcare environment where individuals from all walks of life feel seen, heard, and understood. One of the critical aspects of bridging the cultural gap in healthcare is fostering trust between healthcare providers and patients. Building trust requires open communication, active listening, and a genuine commitment to understanding the cultural context of each patient. Through my nursing practice, I aspire to create a safe and welcoming space where patients can freely express their concerns, knowing that their cultural backgrounds will be respected and integrated into their care plans. The impact of culturally competent nursing extends beyond individual patient interactions. It contributes to the creation of a healthcare system that is equitable and accessible for everyone, regardless of their cultural or linguistic background. As a future nurse, I see myself as an advocate for policy changes that prioritize cultural competence, ultimately influencing a paradigm shift in how healthcare is delivered on a broader scale. In conclusion, my pursuit of a nursing career is driven by a deep-seated commitment to bridging the cultural gap in healthcare. By combining my passion for nursing with a dedication to cultural competence, I hope to contribute to a healthcare landscape where diversity is celebrated, disparities are eliminated, and every individual receives care that is not only medically proficient but also culturally sensitive and inclusive. As I embark on this transformative journey, I am eager to be a positive force for change in healthcare and make a lasting impact on the lives of those I serve.
    Rev. and Mrs. E B Dunbar Scholarship
    The challenges I have encountered as I progressed through higher education have paradoxically shaped me into a more tenacious, resilient, and passionate individual, particularly in nursing. Although I faced adversity during my life, I managed a demanding part-time job, took care of my younger sister, who was trapped in an abusive relationship and overcame the challenges of academic setbacks. Through my experiences, I have realized the significance of education beyond merely acquiring a degree. Education has the potential to make a significant impact on an individual's life. Imagine juggling nursing school, raising two children following a divorce, and providing unwavering support to a younger sister involved in an abusive relationship while working part-time. I experienced this situation firsthand. Even though this journey was not without its hardships, it gave me a powerful sense of purpose. I had an unwavering dedication to my family that fueled countless hours spent on the road and sleepless nights studying after tucking both sets of children into bed. One of the most challenging setbacks I encountered was being dismissed from the university due to failing a pharmacology class. Despite this setback, I ignited an even greater determination within me due to this disappointment. In an appeal process, I demonstrated my steadfast commitment to triumph over setbacks and my genuine passion for nursing. Ultimately, my appeal was successful, giving me a second chance. In preparing to re-enter college this fall, I have become increasingly aware of the need to maintain a sense of equilibrium. By meticulously crafting routines, I have managed my numerous responsibilities while also serving as a guiding light for my academic and emotional well-being. Due to a burning desire to devote myself entirely to my studies, I resigned from my part-time job. Throughout my career, I have made many sacrifices to prove my steadfast commitment to nursing and to make a meaningful contribution to others' lives. It is a calling that makes nursing more than a profession. It is a calling that invites one to extend compassion and healing to those in need. As a result of my encounters, I have become more passionate about giving back to my goal. My goal is to provide support to those with physical health problems and those with mental and emotional health in underserved areas. I hope to be a beacon of hope and positivity for those who need solace and support. The journey I have undertaken so far is an example of my unwavering commitment to overcoming obstacles. It explores my resilience, empathy, and profound desire to catalyze positive change. I am pursuing a degree and a future based on my education and experiences, which will enable me to become a catalyst for change and hope for society. As a nurse, I strive to illuminate lives, contribute to my community, and stand alongside those in need, providing them a path to healing and renewal.
    Brandon Tyler Castinado Memorial Scholarship
    I have held an unwavering passion for becoming an exceptional nurse from a young age. The driving force behind this passion isn't just a career choice; it's my calling, shaped by my experiences. My younger sister was diagnosed with Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Syndrome (SCIDS) during my parents' military service. The experience opened my eyes to the healthcare world and ignited a desire to make a difference. It left a lasting impression on me to witness the kind care and dedication of the nurses who supported my sister and our family in those difficult times. Life's complexities deepened my connection to healthcare. After my ex-husband was diagnosed with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) in 2013, he began peritoneal dialysis. During this period, he was depressed and needed constant medical help. During this struggle, we patiently waited for a kidney donor, underwent several surgeries, and finally found a match. However, they rescinded their offer shortly after we received the good news. 2014, I donated my right kidney, representing nursing's core - empathy, sacrifice, and selflessness. I was a perfect match. We married in 2015. As a result of a series of unexpected events, I got divorced and started a new life with my children. My life changed in December of 2022 when I married an amazing woman who loved me despite my trauma and history. These experiences enabled me to develop my resilience and adaptability. It wasn't easy starting from scratch, but it further fueled my desire to pursue healthcare as my passion. Ultimately, this isn't just about me but my family, community, and everyone I can positively impact. I am entering the healthcare industry multi-facetedly. Those nurses who cared for my sister, family, and ex-husband inspired me to provide the kind of exceptional care I received. In the same way that I have experienced, I aspire to provide comfort and strength to my patients and their families. My journey has shown me that nursing is more than a profession; it's a vocation that demands dedication. I have an empathetic understanding of the emotional rollercoaster patients and families often experience due to my involvement with loved ones in challenging health situations. My commitment is to ensure patients feel heard, understood and cared for beyond medical treatment. It only takes one interaction, one smile, or one reassuring touch to make a big difference. Also, I've learned how important adaptability and resilience are based on my personal experiences. Life doesn't always follow the plans we make, but it's how we navigate the unexpected that truly defines us. My adaptability will carry over to my practice, finding innovative solutions and remaining steadfast when faced with challenges. Healthcare professionals' profound impact on people's lives becomes apparent with every step I take on this journey. I aim to connect with lives, provide comfort, and facilitate healing as I pursue this career. I'm a nurse who is dedicated not only to healing but also to uplifting, treating symptoms, but also to nurture the spirit. My sister's experience, ex-husband's health, divorce trials, and the joy of new beginnings have shaped me. In conclusion, my life's journey has been a testament to the profound impact healthcare professionals can have on individuals and families. I've solidified my commitment to the healthcare industry through adversity, sacrifice, and unwavering dedication. I aspire to be an exceptional nurse who provides compassionate care and a source of strength, comfort, and hope for every patient I encounter. Life's challenges have taught me that healthcare is a transformative journey, and I'm wholeheartedly dedicated to making a meaningful impact on lives, one patient at a time.
    I Can Do Anything Scholarship
    In the future, I dream of being the version of myself who's not just surviving as a nurse but thriving, with financial stability that allows me to fully enjoy life without the constant worry of living paycheck to paycheck.
    Windward Spirit Scholarship
    I am 34 and a student who finds the "Ode to Millennials-Gen Z" extremely powerful. It echoes the sentiments of a generation facing pivotal challenges, from the lingering echoes of COVID-19 to the rising housing market crisis and the overwhelming debt burden of student loans. The focus of this essay is to explore the ode's themes, demonstrate their relevance to my own experience, and show how the Millennial generation and Generation Z can build a brighter future. The ode vividly compares the Great Depression era's economic turmoil to the current struggles of the Millennials and Generation Z generations. The pandemic's onset brought unprecedented uncertainty, similar to the Depression's shadow, which affected our health, economies, and futures. My experience navigating this tumultuous period taught me the power of unity in the face of adversity. It was a testament to the Greatest Generation's unwavering determination to remain resilient during the pandemic, from community-led relief efforts to remote work opportunities. Reflections on communication dynamics highlight the changing nature of relationships across generations in the ode. As a millennial who grew up in a technologically savvy generation, I know the challenges of bridging the digital divide. Despite my preference for face-to-face conversations, I recognize online platforms' ability to promote global dialogue. Technology enabled virtual mental health support groups and online education to transcend geographic constraints during the pandemic, fostering a sense of belonging. It is deeply moving to read an ode that ponders intergenerational dynamics. I understand the importance of dialogue and mutual respect, having benefited from older generations' wisdom and contributed to the evolving narrative. As we see through the housing market crisis, history's echoes are still present today. As a result of the housing market collapse in 2008, I became more sensitive to sustainable economic policies, and my approach to financial planning changed forever. As we co-create solutions that navigate these complex issues, we can draw upon the insights of older generations and the innovation of the younger. It also strikes a chord with the ode's emphasis on Millennials and Gen Z accepting their duty. We are all burdened by crippling student loan debt, which shapes our choices and dreams now and in the future. I see a commitment to transforming individual struggles into collective progress as I witness the fervor with which these generations are advocating for student loan reforms and equitable education. Our generation responds to adversity with innovative initiatives such as income-based repayment plans and scholarship programs. With Millennials and Generation Z leading the way, the future could be more equitable. Our goal should be to encourage affordable housing policies, promote sustainable urban development, and foster collaboration between the public and private sectors to address the housing market crisis. We can develop resilient financial strategies by leveraging the experiences of those who have weathered previous economic downturns. We can alleviate the student loan crisis by advocating for comprehensive reforms to ease the burden on graduates and enhance their contribution to society. To achieve financial stability and freedom, we must lobby for reduced interest rates, expand public service loan forgiveness programs, and enhance financial literacy education. I believe the "Ode to Millennials-Gen Z" captures the essence of my 34-year-old female student journey, marked by perseverance, innovation, and collaboration. We can leverage our struggles, such as COVID-19, housing market challenges, and student loan debt, to fuel positive change. Our ability to transform adversity into opportunity lies in our ability to architect a resilient future. A legacy of progress, unity, and unwavering determination to create a world that benefits all can be left behind by bridging the gap between generations, advocating for systemic reforms, and encouraging sustainable practices.
    Romeo Nursing Scholarship
    Nurses are the unsung heroes of the healthcare system in a world devoted to health and wellness. A nurse is a caring individual who provides emotional support and contributes greatly to the well-being of families and communities. Nurses, despite their vital role, often find themselves underappreciated and overshadowed. There is a looming shortage of nurses due to many experienced nurses planning to retire soon, making raising the next generation of nursing professionals imperative. A scholarship opportunity like this embodies the essence of making healthcare more secure for tomorrow, a mission that resonates deeply with my passion for nursing. Making a meaningful impact on people's lives has captivated me since a young age. Nursing offers the possibility of providing comfort, healing, and hope during times of vulnerability, which drives my career decision. Despite medical technology and advancements, nurses still provide invaluable human connections. It's not just about the medical case. Every patient is someone's friend, family member, their parent. Realizing I can provide skilled medical care and a genuine connection to others has driven my determination to become a nurse. Nursing is more than a job; it's a vocation. This is a calling, a commitment to serve and uplift those around us. Nursing professionals have demonstrated unwavering dedication to me in my personal and professional life, during my younger sister's diagnosis of SCIDS and during my mother's time of need. In the days before I had my first child, I didn't have any family members or friends to turn to for support. In the case of my ex-husband's kidney transplant, the nurses walked us through the process as often as needed. The fact that they could offer comfort to their patients, relieve their pain, and advocate for their interests left a profound impression on me. I was influenced by these experiences to pursue nursing with unwavering enthusiasm due to my belief in its transformative power. The current nursing shortage crisis is more than a statistical concern; it directly threatens our society's well-being. As a result, we need to inspire the next generation of nurses to take on this challenge. Based on my own experience, I am motivated by the desire to contribute to the solution. The torch of compassionate care can be carried forward by a new nurse with each retiring nurse. This scholarship will inspire aspiring nurses, recognize the value of their future contributions, and encourage them to commit to nursing. It is undeniable that nursing poses many challenges, but the rewards it offers far outweigh these. Touching lives, providing comfort to those suffering, and advocating for those in need is an honor that I look forward to. Patients and their families rely on nurses for strength when most vulnerable. Nursing is not just about administering medication or performing procedures. The healing process depends on fostering a sense of trust and partnership. Upon becoming a nurse, I envision myself doing my best to combine medical expertise with compassionate care. I commit myself to lifelong learning and professional development to provide my patients with the highest quality of care. As a future nurse, I also wish to exemplify dedication, empathy, and resilience for future generations. Inspiring and supporting the next wave of nursing professionals is essential because nurses play a vital role in the healthcare industry. The scholarship is intended to provide financial assistance to me and affirm my aspirations and determination to become a nurse. With this support, I am confident I will overcome challenges, contribute meaningfully to the healthcare sector, and carry the torch of compassionate nursing for generations to come.
    Kim Moon Bae Underrepresented Students Scholarship
    As I embark upon the path to higher education, I reflect upon the profound impact of my identity as a bi-racial LGBTQIA individual. This unique journey has brought challenges and growth, underscoring the importance of inclusivity and the need to address disparities within academia and society. Growing up as a bi-racial woman within the LGBTQIA community has shaped my perspective in ways I never anticipated. My life has been a tapestry woven with threads of diverse cultures, languages, and experiences. This rich background has been a source of enrichment, yet it has also posed complex questions of identity and belonging. Through introspection and self-discovery, I have emerged with a deep sense of self-assuredness and a commitment to celebrating my individuality and the diversity surrounding me. The journey within the LGBTQIA community has cultivated within me an abiding sense of empathy and a profound desire to champion inclusivity. Yet, it is impossible to ignore the realities of our world. Instances of differential treatment based on my identity have highlighted the pressing need for change. Even within higher education, where enlightenment is paramount, I have encountered situations where my identity was openly treated differently. These occurrences have fortified my resolve to actively contribute to a more equitable academic environment that embraces every student's unique background and perspective. The broader global context reflects an ongoing struggle for inclusivity and equity. While progress has been made, disparities persist, and marginalized communities face systemic barriers. As a bi-racial LGBTQIA scholar, I am acutely aware that my journey will continue to be influenced by these societal dynamics. Nevertheless, my commitment to leveraging my education to catalyze change remains unwavering. I am dedicated to contributing to a world where diversity is celebrated, biases are confronted, and opportunities are accessible to all. This scholarship is more than a financial opportunity; it represents an affirmation of my aspirations and the potential impact of my voice. Receiving this scholarship would enable me to channel my energies fully into my academic pursuits and my mission of promoting inclusivity. It would provide me with the resources to challenge financial and societal barriers and continue advocating for a more equitable and understanding society. In conclusion, my journey as a bi-racial LGBTQIA scholar has been a testament to resilience, growth, and a commitment to positive change. My fervent belief is that through education and advocacy, we can dismantle the walls of prejudice and pave the way for a more inclusive future. I am confident I can contribute meaningfully to this transformative process with this scholarship. I sincerely thank you for considering my application and recognizing the potential of individuals like myself to shape a better world. Thank you for your time and consideration.
    Catrina Celestine Aquilino Memorial Scholarship
    As I reflect upon the journey that has brought me to this point in my life, I am reminded of the countless obstacles I have overcome, each of which has shaped me into the resilient individual I am today. My name is Micalyn, and I am a woman of bi-racial heritage, a mother of two wonderful children, a survivor of divorce, and a determined individual who aspires to make a lasting positive impact on the world through a healthcare career. From a young age, I witnessed the profound effects of healthcare on the lives of individuals and families. My experience of losing my sister to Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Syndrome (SCIDS) was a turning point that ignited my passion for medicine. Witnessing my sister's challenges and the tireless efforts of healthcare professionals who cared for her inspired me to dedicate my life to making a difference in the lives of others. I realized that my unique background, which encompasses both African-American and Caucasian cultures, could be a powerful asset in fostering cultural and ethnic diversity within the healthcare field. Life took an unexpected turn when I navigated the complex waters of a divorce. The challenges I encountered during this time tested my strength and perseverance. Balancing the responsibilities of single parenthood while pursuing my education was undeniably tough, but it also taught me the value of resilience, time management, and unwavering determination. These lessons have fortified my commitment to succeeding in my academic pursuits and making a tangible impact on the world around me. I am diligently working towards obtaining my Bachelor of Science in Nursing. My academic journey has been marked by dedication, hard work, and a deep desire to become a compassionate and capable healthcare professional. With every lesson learned and skill acquired, I am one step closer to achieving my dream of positively impacting the lives of patients and their families. One of the most pressing issues in healthcare today is the lack of cultural and ethnic diversity among healthcare professionals. This disparity often leads to a lack of understanding and inadequate care for patients from diverse backgrounds. My experiences have given me a unique perspective on the importance of cultural sensitivity and inclusivity in healthcare. As a woman of mixed heritage, I am acutely aware of the challenges faced by individuals who do not fit neatly into one racial or ethnic category. I am committed to promoting cultural competence within the medical field, ensuring that every patient receives care that is respectful, empathetic, and tailored to their needs. My vision for the future extends beyond the confines of a hospital or clinic. I aspire to contribute to developing policies and practices prioritizing diversity, equity, and inclusion in healthcare settings. I envision a world where individuals from all walks of life feel seen, heard, and understood by their healthcare providers. By leveraging my background, experiences, and education, I am confident I can be pivotal in reshaping the healthcare landscape and driving positive change. In conclusion, my journey, marked by triumphs over adversity, a commitment to education, and a determination to make a difference, has prepared me to excel in healthcare. Pursuing a medical career, I am resolute in advancing cultural and ethnic diversity within the healthcare system. Through my unique perspective and unwavering dedication, I aim to foster a more inclusive and compassionate healthcare environment where every patient receives the highest quality of care, regardless of their background. With this scholarship, I will be one step closer to turning my vision into a reality, and I am profoundly grateful for the opportunity to embark on this transformative journey.
    Dr. Alexanderia K. Lane Memorial Scholarship
    As a 34-year-old mother of two embarking on a journey of education and growth, the legacy of Dr. Alexanderia K. Lane holds a special place in my heart. Her unwavering commitment to helping others resonates deeply with my life experiences and aspirations. Applying for the Dr. Alexanderia K. Lane Memorial Scholarship is not only an honor but an opportunity to share why helping others is a fundamental pillar of a thriving society. The significance of aiding those in need is ingrained in the very fabric of humanity. It's a beacon of hope that illuminates even the darkest corners of life. By extending a helping hand, we bridge the gaps that divide us, fostering a sense of unity and understanding that transcends our differences. Through acts of kindness, we build a foundation of trust and empathy, creating a society where compassion thrives. As a mother, I've witnessed firsthand how a single gesture of assistance can ripple outward, positively impacting not only the recipient but also their families and communities. Every smile exchanged, every burden shared, echoes in the hearts of all involved, fostering a sense of connectedness that shapes the collective well-being. Helping others reminds us that we are all part of an intricate tapestry, each thread interwoven with stories, struggles, and triumphs. In a world often marked by challenges, lending support can uplift spirits, instill courage, and inspire change. By standing alongside those who face adversity, we empower them to navigate life's hurdles with renewed determination. Helping is an investment in the human spirit, breathing life into dreams and catalyzing a cycle of positivity that extends far beyond initial interactions. Moreover, offering assistance is a reflection of the values that define us. It amplifies our intrinsic goodness, reaffirming our commitment to making the world a better place. As a mother, embodying these values is a powerful lesson for my children. Teaching them the importance of helping others cultivates a sense of responsibility, nurturing their growth into compassionate and responsible individuals. Dr. Lane's belief in the power of education underscores the transformative nature of assistance. Education equips individuals with tools that transcend circumstances, enabling them to break free from cycles of hardship. Helping others access education empowers them to rewrite their narratives, opening doors to new opportunities and empowering them to shape their destinies. Through the Dr. Alexanderia K. Lane Memorial Scholarship, I aspire to continue Dr. Lane's legacy by championing the importance of helping others. With the scholarship's support, I envision myself excelling in my educational journey and extending a helping hand to fellow students and my community. By doing so, I aim to create a positive impact that echoes Dr. Lane's principles. In conclusion, helping others is a cornerstone of a harmonious and compassionate society. It fosters unity, ignites hope, and transforms lives in ways that reverberate through generations. By embracing this principle, we pay tribute to the legacy of individuals like Dr. Alexanderia K. Lane, weaving a tapestry of empathy, kindness, and empowerment that enriches the human experience.
    Barbara J. DeVaney Memorial Scholarship Fund
    As a woman who embodies the spirit of resilience and determination, I am honored to apply for the Barbara J. DeVaney Scholarship. The obstacles I've faced as a biracial single mother pursuing a nursing degree have ignited a fire within me to create a better life not only for myself but for those I hope to serve in the medical field. My journey has been one of unyielding perseverance, shaped by the challenges I've navigated as a woman raising children while overcoming the scars of abuse and racism. Despite the odds stacked against me, I remain steadfast in my pursuit of higher education, driven by a profound passion for nursing and an unwavering commitment to my children's future. Growing up in a large, diverse family instilled in me the values of hard work and diligence, traits that I carry with me as I forge my path in the medical world. My firsthand experiences in healthcare, coupled with my deep desire to make a difference in people's lives, have solidified my conviction that nursing is my true calling. I have been drawn to the medical field since childhood, and my journey has led me back to this vocation as I pursue a BSN degree. This scholarship represents more than just financial assistance; it symbolizes the recognition of the unique challenges that women like me face. It is a beacon of hope for those of us who strive to break through barriers that often go unnoticed. If honored with this scholarship, I would use the funds to continue my education, allowing me to enhance my nursing skills and contribute effectively to patient care. The financial support would alleviate the burden of tuition and enable me to dedicate more time and energy to my studies and clinical experiences. As a woman of color, I am passionate about promoting diversity and inclusion within the healthcare field. I envision myself as an advocate for underrepresented communities, working tirelessly to bridge gaps in healthcare accessibility and quality. My background as a survivor of abuse fuels my empathy and determination to provide compassionate care to those who have endured similar challenges. Furthermore, being a first-generation college student, I understand the power of education to transform not only individual lives but also entire communities. With the knowledge and skills gained from my nursing education, I aspire to inspire others to pursue their dreams, breaking the cycle of limited opportunities. In conclusion, I am deeply honored to apply for the Barbara J. DeVaney Scholarship. My life's journey, marked by adversity and triumph, has fortified my commitment to nursing and serving others. With the support of this scholarship, I am determined to continue my education, embrace opportunities to empower marginalized communities, and ultimately create a better life for myself, my children, and those entrusted to my care. I am immensely grateful for your consideration and the potential to join the legacy of Barbara J. DeVaney in making a lasting impact on the world.
    Charles Cheesman's Student Debt Reduction Scholarship
    The financial hardships of attending a private school without a cosigner for student loans are well known to me as a black female student pursuing a healthcare degree. I have struggled to balance my finances while raising both my school-aged children, even though I have obtained other types of loans and have worked full-time. My pursuit of a BSN degree has been challenging, but I am determined to achieve my goals of being financially free, traveling, and experiencing other cultures through my education. If I were to win this scholarship, I would be greatly supported in my attempts to ease the burden of the financial struggles that I face every day. Taking care of my children, who constantly grow and change, is one of my biggest concerns, as their needs constantly change. Whether it's school-related expenses, extracurricular activities, or everyday necessities, there can be no doubt that the costs can quickly add up. Moreover, the rise in inflation of everyday necessities, as well as the increase in living costs as a consequence of the pandemic, has only added to the financial stress that many people have been facing. At times, I struggle with feeling guilty for prioritizing my educational needs over those of my children. Unfortunately, I owe an outstanding balance at my school, and I am unable to move forward and register for my next classes without making those payments. This has created a difficult situation where I must balance the financial needs of my education with those of my family. It can be challenging to find the right balance, but I am committed to doing everything in my power to provide for my children and continue pursuing my educational goals. I believe that investing in my education will ultimately benefit my family in the long run, but it is not always an easy decision to make. Although I am facing many challenges at the moment, I am determined to remain committed to my academics and life goals. My passion for making a difference in the world of healthcare leads me to be enthusiastic about the opportunities that await me in the years to come. By receiving this scholarship, I will be able to focus more on my studies and spend less time worrying about my finances. The scholarship would also allow me the opportunity to pursue extracurricular activities that relate to my studies and those of my children, contributing to my academic development as well as theirs. Receiving this money would also allow me to pay down or off some of my high-interest loans and credit cards. Most Americans today do have money for emergencies let alone a savings account. Paying off the debt would allow me to better balance my finances and help set me up for success moving forward. The opportunity would allow me to gain valuable experience and knowledge, as well as to further my education and explore new interests. The final words I would like to say are that I am grateful to have the chance to apply for this scholarship and am honored to be considered for it. If I were to win this scholarship, it would not only ease the financial burden that I face at the moment, but it would also provide me with the support and encouragement that I need to continue pursuing my dreams in the future. Please accept my sincerest thanks for your consideration.
    Dr. Ifeoma Ezebuiro Ezeobele Africans in Nursing Scholarship
    Knowing firsthand the impact nurses can have on a patient's life, I understand why nursing is such a rewarding and fulfilling career. As a young child, I was inspired to pursue a career in nursing by my family pediatrician, Dr. Oo and his nursing staff. Dr. Oo has been the pediatrician of my family since the day we moved to the area. He was the pediatrician of my children and of my nieces and nephews as well. He has provided me, my siblings, my children and other family members with more than just healthcare. I did not understand the importance of his work or the work of his staff until I was a little older. Around the age of 9, my little sister became ill with an extremely serious complication from a pre-existing condition. She had developed slurred speech, confusion and was unable to move. The emergency room received my sister shortly after my parents rushed her there, where a nurse quickly took his vital signs and placed her in a room. Visiting the ER wasnt uncommon for our family, but it was never easy rushing thru those doors. Throughout the process, the nurses ensured that my sister was comfortable, that we were informed of what was happening, and that everyone's needs were met. A number of doctors examined my sister, ordering tests and prescribing medication and asking questions. In that moment, I realized the importance of nurses to the healthcare system. They are the ones who provide comfort, care, and support to patients daily. Nurses ensure that patients are receiving the appropriate medications, that their vital signs are stable, and that they are treated with dignity and respect. However, nurses' practical skills aren't the only reasons why they are so important - compassion and empathy are also among their greatest assets. In her nursing care, the nurses of Dr. Oo always went above and beyond the call of duty to make their patients feel at home.To make my family feel at home. I appreciated the way they remembered our names, inquired about our hobbies and interests, and genuinely cared about our well-being. I will always be grateful to them for their kindness in what was always a stressful and frightening environment. So why do I want to become a nurse? Ultimately, I want to make a difference in the life of a patient and make a difference in my community. I want to be the one who provides comfort and support, who listens to their concerns, and who helps them through difficult times. I aspire to be like Dr. Oo's nurses, who showed me just how much a nurse can influence the lives of patients and their families. The purpose of my career is to make a positive difference in the world, one patient at a time.
    Harvey and Geneva Mabry Second Time Around Scholarship
    As a black female student in my thirties with two children, I have faced many challenges throughout my life. Despite these challenges, I have found the strength and determination to pursue my dreams and create a better future for my family. One of my biggest dreams is to obtain a BSN degree. The first reason I decided to go back to school was for the sake of my family. The journey to return to school and earn a BSN degree has been difficult, but it has also been deeply rewarding thus far. The aftermath of a difficult divorce left me struggling to make ends meet and provide for my children. I knew obtaining a degree would be the key to unlocking better job opportunities and a brighter financial future. Another reason why I chose a BSN degree is because I want to advocate for my community. As a member of the black community, I have seen firsthand the lack of representation and advocacy within the healthcare industry. My mother was routinely mistreated, underrepresented and ignored with it came to healthcare in the late 80's and 90's. As a result, my sister: who was diagnosed later with her condition due to those disparities, was directly affected by the lack of representation during that time. I believe that education is a powerful tool, and by obtaining a BSN degree, I can become an agent of change in my community and beyond. I want to be the voice for those who aren't being heard and I want to be the one whose hand they hold when everyone else has left them. I want to be the reason a family can rest easy knowing we went above and beyond the call to be there for them and their loved ones. Pursuing a BSN degree will also allow me to travel the world and show my children more than what I had growing up. As a nurse, I will have the chance to work in different healthcare settings, from hospitals to clinics to international aid organizations. To cruise lines, airlines, hotels and resorts. I want to expose my children to different cultures, languages, and perspectives. I want to show them that there is a whole world out there waiting to be explored. Finally, returning to school and pursuing a BSN degree has given me a sense of purpose and pride. It has been challenging to balance work, school, and motherhood, but it has also been rewarding. I am setting an example for my children, showing them that no matter how difficult life may get, they have the power to overcome any obstacle and pursue their dreams. In conclusion, returning to school to pursue a BSN degree has been one of the most significant decisions I have ever made. It will give me the opportunity to be able to obtain achieve financial freedom, advocate for my community, travel the world, and set an example for my children. I am grateful for the chance to make a difference in people's lives, and I am honored to be a part of the nursing profession.
    Rose Browne Memorial Scholarship for Nursing
    Nursing has had a profound impact on my family and me, and I am inspired to pursue a career in nursing after experiencing medical racism, medical bias, and medical trauma. My journey to this point has been shaped by a series of life experiences that have taught me the importance of compassion, empathy, and advocacy in healthcare. My first experience with medical racism came when I was 7. It was 1994. My mother is an elegant black woman who married a military white man. I am the eldest of 4 but at that time I was only the eldest of 3. I went to the doctor with my mom and my new little sister for a routine checkup. When my mom mentioned that my sister was experiencing unusual symptoms, the doctor dismissed her concerns and told her that it was likely just because she was an anxious new mother. It wasn't until a few weeks later, when my mother was rushed to the ER with my baby sister with more serious issues, did anyone listen to her. After an extensive workup and weeks in the hospital, my baby sister was diagnosed with undefined SCIDS. It was 1994, and her condition was rare. I couldn't help but wonder, if my mothers' concerns had been taken more seriously, would my sisters' diagnosis have been caught earlier? Would she have gotten better care if we were not a minority? If my mother wasn't black. This experience taught me the importance of listening to patients and taking their concerns seriously, regardless of race or ethnicity. My experience with medical bias came when I was caring for my critically ill sister. My sister was in and out of the hospital for months, and I couldn't help but notice how differently the doctors and nurses treated us depending on the level of care that my sister required. When my sister was in the ICU, the nurses were attentive and caring, but the care was noticeably different when my sister was on a regular hospital floor. The nurses seemed overworked and stretched thin, and it was clear that they didn't have the time or resources to provide the same level of care as in the ICU. This experience taught me the importance of advocating for patients and the need for more resources and support for healthcare workers. My experience with medical trauma came when I was involved in a serious car accident. I was rushed to the emergency room with multiple injuries and felt scared and overwhelmed. But the nurses weren't there to help me through it all. They were the ones who ignored me through the trauma of the accident, and I will never forget their coldness and judgment when I informed them I was in a same-sex relationship that didn't require a pregnancy test. My mother faced numerous obstacles before, during and after her journey, including financial hardship and racial barriers, but she never gave up on her dream of becoming a nurse. Watching her overcome these challenges and achieve her goal was a testament to the power of perseverance and determination. It taught me that anything is possible with hard work and dedication. All of these experiences have led me to pursue a career in nursing. I want to be there for patients and their families, listen to their concerns, advocate for their needs, and provide the same level of care and compassion that I received during my medical experiences. I believe that nursing is a calling, and I am ready to answer that call.
    Wieland Nurse Appreciation Scholarship
    Knowing firsthand the impact nurses can have on a patient's life, I understand why nursing is such a rewarding and fulfilling career. As a young child, I was inspired to pursue a career in nursing by my family pediatrician, Dr. Oo and his nursing staff. Dr. Oo has been the pediatrician of my family since the day we moved to the area. He was the pediatrician of my children and of my nieces and nephews as well. He has provided me, my siblings, my children and other family members with more than just healthcare. I did not understand the importance of his work or the work of his staff until I was a little older. Around the age of 9, my little sister became ill with an extremely serious complication from a pre-existing condition. She had developed slurred speech, confusion and was unable to move. The emergency room received my sister shortly after my parents rushed her there, where a nurse quickly took his vital signs and placed her in a room. Visiting the ER wasnt uncommon for our family, but it was never easy rushing thru those doors. Throughout the process, the nurses ensured that my sister was comfortable, that we were informed of what was happening, and that everyone's needs were met. A number of doctors examined my sister, ordering tests and prescribing medication and asking questions. In that moment, I realized the importance of nurses to the healthcare system. They are the ones who provide comfort, care, and support to patients daily. Nurses ensure that patients are receiving the appropriate medications, that their vital signs are stable, and that they are treated with dignity and respect. However, nurses' practical skills aren't the only reasons why they are so important - compassion and empathy are also among their greatest assets. In her nursing care, the nurses of Dr. Oo always went above and beyond the call of duty to make their patients feel at home.To make my family feel at home. I appreciated the way they remembered our names, inquired about our hobbies and interests, and genuinely cared about our well-being. I will always be grateful to them for their kindness in what was always a stressful and frightening environment. So why do I want to become a nurse? Ultimately, I want to make a difference in the life of a patient and make a difference in my community. I want to be the one who provides comfort and support, who listens to their concerns, and who helps them through difficult times. I aspire to be like Dr. Oo's nurses, who showed me just how much a nurse can influence the lives of patients and their families. The purpose of my career is to make a positive difference in the world, one patient at a time.
    MedLuxe Representation Matters Scholarship
    The goals I have set for myself in my medical career would include getting my BSN, advancing my career in specialties such as organ transplantation and infectious diseases, and contributing to the efforts in medically inclusive textbooks and illustrations. The first goal I have to achieve is finishing school and getting my BSN. I am currently a Jr. at Chamberlain University in Indiana and couldn't be happier with my progress these last few semesters. My anticipated graduation date is in December 2024. I wish to explore the world of infectious diseases and put my stamp on the specialty in memory of my sister, who passed away in 2011 from complications of her illness. Since her passing, science has advanced tremendously, and I want to be a part of that advancement. As a result of donating my left kidney to my then-husband in 2014, I became enthralled with my transplant team and the process. I have been in healthcare since my younger sister was born in 1994. She was born with a genetic abnormality and had been in and out of hospitals since birth. My mother is a southern African American woman, and my father is a northern Irish/German American man. As a biracial woman, I have experienced the vast differences in treatment, care, and diagnosis from a personal and professional standpoint. For me, it is essential to use my privilege to decrease the gap in racist and discriminatory healthcare practices. Witnessing the exhaustion my mother went thru advocating for herself and her child to keep both of them healthy and alive sparked a flame within me. Growing up, I quickly noticed that no doctors looked like my mom or me. I learned how to advocate for myself and those who couldn't. I learned that there weren't many case studies that showed illustrations of children like my sister. I watched as my mother had to plead her case with top medical professionals about differential diagnoses to ensure my sisters' survival. When I became pregnant with my first child, I learned quickly that I had to dig deep for information about BIWOC and pregnancy, labor and delivery, and postpartum care and advocate for myself because no one else had the education, training, and experience to help me. When I had my kidney transplant surgery, I had to advocate for my pain because I was told, "it wasn't that bad," and "go home and take some Tylenol" after major abdominal surgery. While working as a CNA, I learned I had to advocate harder for those that looked like me. I had to exaggerate signs and symptoms to doctors and nurses so my patients could get standard routine care. I learned thru a quick google search that it was nearly impossible to find illustrations I could use as a reference for myself and others like me. TikTok introduced me to a young medical student who took the initiative and introduced new illustrations for textbooks. It opened my world and gave me hope that my children and grandchildren and their care and treatment will be better represented. It gave me hope that inclusion and diversity would be taught as a standard and that it would be widely practiced. That future doctors and nurses would be well-prepared for the diversity of patients that awaits them. Diversity and inclusion are powerful tools that need to be utilized more in healthcare. Racial diversity will increase patient care and survival rates for oncology, obstetrics, gynecology, and mental health. Racial diversity will also encourage more children to pursue their dreams of becoming doctors, nurses, scientists, and researchers.
    Cindy J. Visser Memorial Nursing Scholarship
    It is my goal to be the best nurse I can be, be a person of assurance to the patients, be confident in my abilities and skills in helping them, and most importantly, to serve as the patient's advocate and champion at a time when they cannot. Nursing is a. Ipathy and compassion, and I firmly believe that the best nurses have 100% commitment and can make the most significant impact on the lives of patients at their most vulnerable. Having the ability to hone my medical skills and knowledge to stay abreast of all possible medical options is my dream and goal, to be the nurse thatBeing truly trust. For me, being a nurse is not a job or a career choice but a calling. The women in my family provided strong inspiration for me to answer my calling. My fraternal grandmother was a nurse at St. Mary's hospital in Kankakee, Illinois, for a very long time. A few of my aunts were nurses, and my mother became a nurse after years of direct experience caring for my immune-compromised sister. My mother became great friends with some of the top professionals on my sisters' health care team and took their advice. They were right; my mother was a natural. In addition to my family, many of the nurses I encountered during my sisters many hospital stays impacted me deeply, and I soon realized that the only way for me to pay it forward would be to, in turn, provide a nurse to others in need when they need it. If only for a moment, I want to be the nurse who makes someone's day when they are going through a life crisis by smiling and brightening their day. A smile has the power to carry a patient over and aid in the healing process. In my view, nurses are responsible not only for a patient's physical needs, but also for their emotional and psychological needs, and they should have compassion, empathy, and complete respect for all patients.Shortly after my sister passed in 2011, i turned to nursing. It was the healing i needed. My sister died of complications from a ruptured brain anyurerism as a complication from Undefined SCIDS. An ambitious, passionate, caring, understanding, and respectful woman, I am determined to succeed. With my growing desire to become a nurse, I now know I possess the compassion and fortitude required of a successful nurse. While being sensitive to human suffering, I also possess the stomach to see it. Throughout my life, I've overcome obstacles, learned important lessons, and realized my own capabilities.I believe I can be a positive influence on today's healthcare crisis and be part of the change in this world.
    Bold Persistence Scholarship
    Persistence. The firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition. I can vividly remember a time in my life when I had to be very persistent. My then-husband had recently received a kidney transplant and I was almost hyper-vigilant about making sure his body did not reject his new organ. He was only 6 months post-op and I had noticed some changes. I called his transplant team and made them aware of my concerns. I was told I was probably just paranoid and to call back if anything had changed. I was taken aback by the lack of support I was receiving from the other end of the phone call. Discouraged with the answers I received I called back every day for 2 weeks hoping to talk to anyone who would listen to me. Finally, someone listened and I was able to get an appointment. The hospital was 2 hrs away but I was happy to make the drive to settle my fears. We went thru a routine workup and the whole time, the staff tried to tell me I was overreacting. It was 1 hour before the labs came back and when they did the dr. confirmed my worst fear. He was rejecting the new organ. My then-husband was immediately admitted and was started on an aggressive treatment plan. After the news of rejection had settled I broke down into tears. I was angry and scared and relieved and thankful all at the same time. Fortunately, we were able to save the organ, and my then-husband had a successful recovery. I don't think without my dedication, love, and persistence my husband would have made it through his situation as well as he did.
    Bold Turnaround Story Scholarship
    My great turnaround story would be when I got pregnant with my first child. I was in an abusive relationship and lived in the worst conditions possible. I didn't finish school and was working dead-end jobs. I moved back to my home state and sought help from friends and family. Once I learned of my new responsibility, I quickly refocused my priorities. After my daughter was born, I went back to school and got my GED. I started working as a hostess at the local Ruby Tuesdays and went to school part-time. I got on food stamps, WIC, and Medicaid to help my daughter and me. Within six months of starting, I earned a new position as a waitress, was accepted into CNA courses at the local community college, and worked on my mental health. Over eight years, I earned my CNA, continued school, and advanced in my job opportunities. I made enough connections that the sheriff himself offered me a job as a correctional officer. By this time, I had already had another child and was making ends meet but always striving to do better. The job was the best thing I could do for my family. The salary increase was enough to keep us off state aid and out of debt. I was able to take care of my family in more ways than I thought possible. I was able to get the mental health I needed consistently and continue to provide for my family. I have never been more proud of the effort, hard work, love, consistency, growth, and respect I have for myself from where I started to where I am now.
    William M. DeSantis Sr. Scholarship
    The most important lesson I have learned so far is that you can't make someone want what they need no matter how much better their situation will be for it. After a scary trip to the ER, I learned my then-boyfriend had end-stage renal failure. My sister had just died of a complication from brain surgery in January of 2011, and the wound was still fresh. My then-boyfriend informed me that he knew about his diagnosis but wasn't concerned. By the time I learned the information, he was ready for dialysis. I found a nephrologist and made all the necessary appointments. We had decided on peritoneal dialysis since he was still so young. He got his catheter placed, and we started our journey. We were told he was eligible for a transplant. Again, I acted quickly, got him on multiple state lists, and told everyone I knew that we were looking and hopeful. I was vested. I felt a personal responsibility to make sure I didn't lose another person I loved. After four months of home dialysis, one of his sisters got tested to see if she was a donation match. To our relief, she was. We heard the news from our transplant team before his sister told us. We assumed she was just shocked or wanted to surprise us. My then-boyfriend spoke to his sister and learned the hard truth that she wasn't comfortable donating but felt obligated to get tested since they were related. We were devastated and accepted that we might not find a match and continued with our new routine. Then in November of 2012, I decided to go out on a limb and try to see if I was a match. Then on thanksgiving of 2012, I learned I was a perfect match. The transplant team was ready to move forward with surgery as early as the following week. I told them I needed time to make the appropriate arrangements. We settled for a date in March of 2013. I told my then-boyfriend that evening at dinner. March came, and everything was in order. The surgery was a success, and we were sent home after four days. Six months post opt, I noticed some rejection symptoms. I called and had to beg for an appointment. Everyone thought I was paranoid. The day came for his check-up, and the nurse ran labs like normal and asked all the usual questions. We waited in a small room for the dr to come in. It felt like forever. When he did arrive, he had a few Drs with him. He told us my then-boyfriend was indeed rejecting the new organ. His anti-rejection medication levels were undetectable. It was the worst day of my life. The Drs. acted fast to try and save the organ. They were successful in their efforts. Sadly this occurrence was not a one-time fluke. My then-boyfriend would again stop taking his medication three more times over a year and a half. Eventually, they had to remove the organ because he was septic. I was devastated. I learned that no matter how bad I may want to help someone, they have to want it for themselves, and I need to be ok with whatever decision they make. Going forward, this has helped me and prepared me for similar situations with my patients and their families. It has made me more realistic and accepting that people are human. This experience has made me a better person despite the outcome. I am still an organ donor, and I don't regret my decision to donate.
    Bold Wise Words Scholarship
    "You can't make someone love you by giving them more of what they already don't appreciate." -Annie C White. The way I view this quote reflects my constant effort to improve my mental health. It is hard for me to set boundaries regarding how I would like to be treated and loved. I am a people pleaser. As a giver, I have always believed that everyone deserves someone in their corner, even if mine was empty. In the beginning, I didn't understand this quote. I didn't relate to it. I dismissed it. I heard this quote a second time; my feelings were angry and resentful. I was recently divorced, alienated from my family, and constantly at odds with my children. Starting over, I wanted to improve my mental health, respect for myself, and sense of self-worth. I was lost and confused. All I could think when hearing this quote was that it was my fault. The problem was me. I questioned everything from my ability to keep my spouse happy to my power to mother my children. Eventually, I had destroyed myself and had difficulty recovering. During my months of therapy, my therapist said something very similar. My eyes immediately filled with tears. I cited Annie C White's quote as if I'd written the selection myself. I was ignited with passion and fire when I heard the words come out of my mouth and understood what they meant. It was helpful to learn what healthy boundaries are and how to set them. Without yelling and fighting, I learned to communicate my thoughts and emotions. Through this experience, I learned to love myself and recognize when I give more than I should. Despite still getting teary-eyed when I read the passage, I feel empowered when I say it aloud.
    You Glow Differently When You're Happy Scholarship
    I can still vividly recall April 19th, 2018, as a happy memory in my adult life. I bought my first set of airline tickets. After starting as a C.O. in August of 2017, I was making adult money. April 24th is my significant other's birthday, so I wanted to do something special with my newly acquired financial freedom. So we went to California, her home state. I planned everything from breakfast to dinner and everything in between for a week. It was so perfect that we go somewhere for a week every year for her birthday.
    Bold Dream Big Scholarship
    As simplistic and silly as it may sound, my dream life looks like having my bills on auto-pay, taking a vacation at least twice a year, having money in the bank that I don't need to touch, and most importantly, being a good person with positive influence in the world. My dream is to become a nurse. I want to help those who need it and want it. I want to be a voice for those who aren't heard. My dream to become a nurse has been a long time in the making. I have had many obstacles, some from the universe and some of my own faults. I started my official medical career back in 2010 after my daughter was born. I got my CNA and worked in hospitals, rehab facilities, private residences, and nursing homes. Unofficially I have been in the medical world most of my life. A younger sibling was born with SCID and died of complications in 2011. She had been in and out of hospitals and rehab facilities all of her life, so I grew up around dr.s, nurses, and psychologists. My mother left her career in technology to better aid my sister and got her LPN back in 2009. My grandmother was an RN for 40 years, and I have some aunts and cousins who are nurses. All of those involved in my sister's care and our daily lives really showed me what a good, selfless person looks like. I want to be that for someone else. My dream doesn't have to be a dream. My dream will eventually be my reality, and I can not wait for the day I wake up.
    Ruth and Johnnie McCoy Memorial Scholarship
    I am 32. I did almost everything out of order. I left high school for a boy in another state. I got pregnant early and stayed way too long in an abusive relationship. I eventually moved back home, had my first child at the very immature age of 20, and got my GED and CNA by the time my child was 6 months old. Immediately started working to provide a good life for us and wasn't able to continue school. I wanted to be a nurse, just like my aunts, grandmother, and mom. I fell in love with another boy, donated my kidney to save his life back in 2013, and had our son in 2014. We got married in 2015, and I worked several jobs to provide for our small family due to my husbands' health issues. Sadly he lost the kidney due to negligence, and our marriage failed. We separated in 2017 and were divorced by 2020. I tried to go back to school several times, but I could never justify the time needed to study and apply myself. In 2017 after we separated, I decided it was time to do more. I worked on myself. I went to therapy, traveled, experienced life with my kids, changed careers, and worked as a correctional officer at the local jail for some time. In 2020 I was given the opportunity to go back to school, and I took it. The reason I want to continue my education is so I can continue to do better for myself. I have always provided support financially, emotionally, and physically to those I love and respect, but I have never been able to do any of those things for myself. Going back to school and staying in school means I can open more doors for myself. Meet new and influential people. Going to college is setting a good example for my children that even if you do things out of order, you can still do them and succeed. Using my education, I will finally get my nursing degree and help those who have been forgotten, underserved, neglected, and abused. When I donated my kidney, I had some complications, and it took every bit of crying, begging, pleading, and multiple ER visits for a dr or a nurse to take me seriously. I am a woman of color, and I had never experienced a situation like that until my complications. No one believed I was in pain. No one believed my story. It wasn't until I demanded a dr or nurse of color that someone heard me. This sparked a fire in me. I knew that if this was happening to me, it had to be happening to other people like me. Getting my degree in nursing will allow me to be that advocate that was not there for me when I needed them. There are not enough people of color in medicine, and I want to be a part of changing that statistic not only for the numbers but for the people who need them. As a nursing student, I can make changes now while still in school and carry those changes well past graduation and into the real world, with real people in real pain. Making a positive impact is only part of the change. I want to continue to be a positive impact for myself and those around me.
    "Wise Words" Scholarship
    "You can't make someone love you by giving them more of what they already don't appreciate." -Annie C White. This quote speaks volumes to me and my constant struggle to improve my mental health. I am a people pleaser, and I have never set boundaries for myself and how I want to be treated and loved. I am a giver, and I have always believed that everyone deserves someone in their corner, even if I had no one in mine. When I first heard this quote, it didn't make sense. It didn't apply to me. I moved on and brushed it off. The second time I heard this quote, I was angry and resentful. I was freshly divorced, alienated from my family, and in a constant battle with my children. I was starting a new life and wanting to improve my mental health, self-respect, and self-worth. Why can't I love them more? Why was my love not good enough? What was I doing wrong? My life was a mess. When I heard this quote, all I could think of at the time was that it was my fault. I wasn't doing enough. I wasn't enough. I questioned everything from my abilities to mother my children, keep my spouse happy and maintain a healthy, functional home life. Was I a good person? Did I deserve love, peace, and happiness? All of these things crossed my mind daily. I was losing myself, and I was having a hard time recovering. After 2 months of therapy, my therapist said something quite similar to this very quote. I immediately broke down into tears. I quoted Ms. Annie C White like I had written the quote myself. Hearing the words come out of my mouth and understanding what they meant ignited a passion and a fire inside me. I learned what healthy boundaries were and how to set them. I learned how to communicate my emotions and thoughts without yelling and fighting. I learned how to love myself and to recognize when I'm giving more than I should be. Most other quotes I have come across in my life are beautiful and strong, but this quote was powerful on a different level, and it took some time, but I'm glad I finally understand what it means. I have this quote saved as my phone background so that when a moment happens and I need a reminder, I always have it. I still get teary-eyed when I read the quote but when I say it out loud I feel empowered and strong.
    MedLuxe Representation Matters Scholarship
    My goal is to finally get my nursing degree. But my goal goes beyond my degree. My goal as a healthcare provider is to be a voice to those who aren't heard or taken seriously. My goal is to be a resource and an advocate for those who are alone, unsupported, forgotten, and neglected. My goal is to be everything that no one was for me or my family growing up. I had a sister who was born with a rare genetic mutation and it took for my sister to become severely ill for the doctors and nurses to take my mother seriously. You see my mother is black and my father is white. My mother is loud and passionate and my father is calm and reserved. My parents were married in the '80s. This was an issue all on its own. The doctors my parents had access to were limited and those they did have access to were from a different generation. Different views and mindsets. A lot of symptoms and issues my sister was experiencing were not being correctly diagnosed or even seen due to my parents' marital status. My sister died young and though her healthcare team improved over the years, I firmly believe if my parents had better access to a larger, more racially diverse healthcare team my sister would have had more quality of life. Being able to recognize symptoms of a disease or disorder on various skin tones plays a huge role in diagnosis, treatment, and care. Increasing racial diversity means being able to identify the difference in Mongolian blue spots on children of color and signs of abuse or neglect. That simple mistake can cost a family years of trauma and loss if misdiagnosed by a doctor who was not familiar with the disorder. More racial diversity means more language barriers will be broken and patients and doctors can establish trust and open communication. Racial diversity means more inclusive treatment plans and care provided by healthcare teams. For example, the diets, lifestyles, environment, religious beliefs, and social constructs of patients will be more widely considered and implemented. An increase in racial diversity means more little boys and girls of color will see more people like them in influential roles which will inspire them to be more. More diversity means more people will be able to relate or recognize a struggle that someone else might have deemed insignificant or irrelevant. My goal is to be a nurse with many skills and specialties. I want to dive into dermatology, wound care, emergency medicine and eventually getting my doctorate in nursing. I want to be more and serve more than I saw growing up.
    Cocoa Diaries Scholarship
    My experience as a black woman is unique to those who can identify with my struggles. I struggle with racism, sexism, and colorism on a daily basis. I have kinky, curly hair that grows up in length instead of down. When I sit in the sun for too long, my skin turns a golden Carmel and beautiful Sepai color. But when I open my mouth and speak, I'm told I sound so eloquent, so well-spoken. You see, I am bi-racial, and I have been told my whole life that I am not a black woman. That I cant identify as a black woman because my father is white, I lived in the suburbs, and I went to a predominantly white school. I can not identify as a black woman. After all, I did not grow up watching stereotypical movies like Boyz in tha hood, or any of the Friday movies, because I do not use AAVE or ebonics. I was never "black" enough for one side and never "white" enough for the other. I was very content most of my life with juggling between two identities. I would cater to the community I was involved with and learned to survive in different social settings this way. I learned keywords and phrases to use when in those social settings so I would fit in better. When I was with my fathers' side of the family, we were often teased about our hair, or our black mother was routinely disrespected and degraded in front of us, us. When we were with my mothers' side of the family, we were teased for speaking so "proper" or not knowing the latest dance trend or rap song. As I got older, I developed a curiosity for what friends, family, and the school didn't teach me. It wasn't until my late 20`s early 30`s that I learned about black culture and black history. I learned about my hair and the history behind it, how to care for it, and love it. How to properly protect my skin from sun damage and how to travel as a black woman, among other things. My childhood was easier than my peers because of my "privilege". As an adult, I learned that I could use the privilege from my fathers' side and the oppression from my mothers' side to my advantage and be a role model my kids could look up to. To be a voice in my community and stick up for those who would otherwise not be heard or taken seriously. I learned that it didn't matter how dark or light my skin was I was still a black woman. I still struggle with racism, sexism, and colorism but as a more educated woman, I try to educate those who would benefit from it most. While my struggles may be different and some lack in severity compared to those who are not mixed, my struggles are no less valid or real. I am a proud black woman.
    Art of Giving Scholarship
    "Opportunities don't happen. You create them."-- Chris Grosser This is me creating my opportunity. My opportunity to be a great nurse. I want to do more with my life than be average. I want to be extraordinary. I want to tap into my inner greatness and make an impact on my communities. My indigenous, people of color, women, and mothers, communities need more representation, and I want to be included in this evolutionary change. I am all of those things. A bi-racial woman of color with children. This is my community. Trying to raise a family, go to school myself, work and survive during a Pandemic is a challenge all on its own. I work hard for what I want in life, and I have wanted this for 10 years. I have been working since I was 16 years old. I have always found ways to make ends meet. I am a proud woman, but I accept help when I need it most. But I am tired of just working a job or two jobs at the same time. I want my career. I will continue to push and prevail with all of my current challenges and those that await me. Being a nurse is rewarding in so many ways. Every dollar counts. This scholarship will help contribute to the financial growth and independence I'm trying to establish for my family. Personal growth, limitless career opportunities, advancements, travel, opportunities to travel and learn, financial freedom, and opportunities to impact and help others. Why do I deserve this scholarship? Because I have the passion and perseverance to become a trusted and respected member of the medical community. With my education, I can help my community get the treatment, resources, attention, and care they need and give them the best chance at a happy, healthy life.
    Dashanna K. McNeil Memorial Scholarship
    Winner
    As cliche as it may sound, my mother is my inspiration. My mother is a strong black woman, and she was married to a white man in the 80`s and had 4 beautiful bi-racial girls. Her third child was born sick. For months my mother begged for someone to help her child, but no one would listen to her. The Drs. all told my mother she was crazy and didn't know what she was talking about. It wasn't until my sister was hospitalized that someone talked to my mother. They questioned her sanity, her competency, and her ability to care for her child. My mother always maintained her composure. Eventually, my sister was diagnosed with SCID, a condition similar to the boy in the bubble disease. As my sister grew older, her condition changed and sometimes worsened, and my mother promised she would only have the best care. So my mother educated herself on everything she could to help my sister. She was a full-time employee and mom. There were many times my mother would have to leave us with our dad so she could live in the hospital with our sister. Things between my parents deteriorated, and eventually, my parents separated. My mother raised all of us on her own, worked 2 jobs at a time, and still took care of my sister. My mother's love and determination grew, and she put herself thru college. She would go nights without sleep and days without food. She studied in between my sisters' procedures and therapies. She had the support and help from the amazing nurses and aides on my sisters' health care team. When the time came, she passed her NCLEX and got her degree. She became an LPN. There was never another opportunity for a dr or a nurse to tell my mother that she didn't know what she was talking about now. My mother stood by my sisters' side for everything and only gave her the best. Sadly my sister lost her battle with SCID in 2010. She was only 16 years old. Her death took us all by surprise. It has been 10 years since she passed. My mother is still an LPN and has taken a specialty to children with compromised diseases and conditions. She has also started her own healthcare business. She truly emulates what I want to be when I grown up. Once I finish school and pass my NCLEX i hope to be a wound care nurse. Ive had a passion and interest for it for years now. I discovered my passion for it while I was working as a CNA in a rehabilitation nursing home. I made roungs with the attending wound care specialist whenever I could. I hope when I become a nurse I am half as good as my mom. I have been pursuing this dream for 10 years now and if the opportunity is there I would love to get my doctorate in wound care and special diseases. I want to validate those who have been turned away and not believed. I want to help those patients that have been abandoned and give a voice to those who have not been heard. I want to make a difference not only for my patients but for my sister. Medicine has come a long way and I would love to find some answers to offer my family comfort about my sister. I owe it to her to be the best nurse i can be and that is exactly what i plan to do.
    A Sani Life Scholarship
    My 2020 experience taught me about myself . I learned to appreciate every moment I have with those around me. I learned to love myself and my body. I learned that I need to educate my children better and prepare them for the world ahead. It became obvious that people like me weren't allotted the same amount of time on this earth as others have been afforded. I am a biracial woman who is also part of the LGBTQ+ community. I am also a millennial. The year 2020 hit many of us extremely hard and extremely fast and was not forgiving. When everything first started, I was scared. Naturally, then when things got worse, my depression and anxiety grew. We couldn't see our family, friends, and educators. It became increasingly difficult to see healthcare providers and get the help that was needed. We couldn't turn on the news or social media without seeing death, sadness, or fear. People were dying from disease, police, and mass shootings. I quickly fell into a deep depression. I let everything around me control who I was. One day my son asked why I never let him play outside anymore. He was 5. He is such a loving boy, and it broke my heart. The truth was I was terrified to let my son-who is 3/4 black- outside to play. I had seen too many little boys being killed while simply playing outside. A few days later my daughter was crying because she thought she was too fat for her clothes. She was only 10. We talked, and I learned that she had body image issues because I have body image issues. During my depression, I talked about how much weight I gained and how I hated my looks. My daughter took that as her own, and it crushed me. I could not let this depression destroy my kids or me. So I did something about it. We started watching more body positivity videos and reading more inclusive books. We learned more about our black leaders and those who have pushed for change. We started eating better and doing family exercises. Saying and believing in mantras like "I love myself, I am strong, I am capable, I am worthy." I learned how to better explain things to my children about social injustices and what we can do to help. I learned to love myself harder and show my children that I love myself. I learned how to show my children how to love themselves. 2020 shaped the way I parent my children and the way I live life. It helped me realize the time to do things is now and never to wait. To speak up and stand for what's right. To seize the moments afforded to us and appreciate every moment after. 2020 was the hardest year in my adult life. I think it made me a better person, mom, daughter, sister, and spouse. I will always hate the year 2020, but I will always appreciate the lessons it taught me.
    Little Bundle Supermom Scholarship — College Award
    Being a single mom is the hardest job I have ever had. I've been working since I was 16 and got pregnant at 20. I was in an abusive relationship. When it came time to learn the gender of the baby, my ex-boyfriend only wanted a son. We were having a girl. He was not shy about expressing his disapproval. From that moment on, I vowed I would love myself enough to leave and protect my daughter. He has never been in our lives. It was never supposed to be that way. He was supposed to be the love of my life. The universe had different plans. I moved back to my family and got support and help, and love. I went back to school and started life over. I have been juggling life as a single mother for a long time. Working all kinds of jobs, some at the same time and crazy hours to make ends meet. Starting with nothing and working my up professional ladders. From needing food stamps and Medicaid to eventually paying for health insurance and buying food on my own. Creating opportunities for myself and my family. I have had to stop and start school a few times due to hardships, but I am currently enrolled at a university and doing well. I have not had thoughts of dropping out this time. I am much older now and wiser. I need this education to serve my family and me better. My motivation is my kids, I have two now, the lifestyle I want, and the satisfaction I will have once I wear my first cap and gown. What's most challenging is the financial aspect of school. The constant reminders to pay or you cant move forward. The difficulties of getting a student loan in my thirties without a co-signer but the ease of getting a personal loan or a car loan on my own. The fact that I still have bills to pay, mouths to feed, and essentials to buy. My kids are only getting bigger and needing more things. I do not get child support, alimony, or TANF. I do, however, get Medicaid and SNAP, which has helped in so many ways. On top of that, we are still in a pandemic. All of my classes have been online, and I learn best thru tactile learning. I need someone to show me and explain it to me. Online courses do not offer that type of assistance. I do not see my campus opening any time soon, so I have to invest that much more effort to really keep up with my studies. So far, the most rewarding thing has been that I get to spend more time with my children. We all study together and learn together and really make things interesting and fun and relevant. I get refreshers on elementary school ideas, and I teach them things about the human body and brain and science. Those are also my favorite moments. I have spent a lot of time working, and I have missed big achievements and moments in my kids' lives because I was always gone. I'm thankful that my kids are a little older now. I originally wanted to wait until my kids were out on their own to try school again, but I have a great support system, and they pushed me to go forward now with my dreams. I want to be a nurse. I am good at it. My compassion and empathy for others really help me excel in healthcare. It must run in my family because my grandmother was a nurse. My aunts are nurses, and my mother is a nurse. She was a single mother for a long time as well. She cared for a dying child, all while putting herself thru LPN school. She raised 4 bi-racial daughters and took care of a household. I love wound care. Some find it repulsive, but I find it incredibly interesting. I discovered my love for wound care while I was working as a CNA in a nursing home. I would always be there first to help with dressing changes and be there when Drs and students were doing rounds. I followed the wound care Dr whenever I could. I see myself working in hospitals and nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. I want to make an impact on those patients. Remind them they are more than just a lost limb or an open sore on the bottom of their feet. Supporting patients in all areas of mental and physical health. Be that one person in their corner whom they can talk to and confide in and trust. To know that I will never give up on them and always support their decision for their bodies. Currently, I am in school and actively working on my BSN. I utilize every resource available to me. Whether it be you-tube, tik-tok, Facebook, medical journals, magazines, and people I know. I pick brains all the time to help prepare and propel me in my studies and work. Winning this scholarship will help financially offset some of the costs of school and help keep me focused on the most important things: my family, my well-being, and my commitment to my studies. Having one less stress to worry about gives me more energy, time, and drive to continue my education. It would be effortless for me to stop and get a few jobs and continue to make excuses. I do not want to do that. I want to complete this academic journey and show my kids that it can be done even though it's hard. I want to show my daughter more real-life examples of black women in healthcare. I want to show my son that school is cool and can be fun and rewarding. I want this degree and career for me and my future patients.
    JuJu Foundation Scholarship
    My greatest inspiration in life is my family. First, my sister Balei is. She died in 2010 from complications of SCID and a brain bleed. She was only 16 years old. She had had multiple strokes and seizures in her life. She overcame so many obstacles. Obstacles like having a black mother who the Drs always dismissed and demeaned. Having a white father that was too scared to help. That all changed when my mother went to nursing school while my sister was sick. Obstacles like missing months and months of school because she was in a rehabilitation hospital. There was a time when she had to re-learn how to walk and talk and eat. She had to re-learn how to swallow, so she didn't choke on food and liquids. To help her thru this, we all drank a small juice cup mixed with Thick-It. It made the consistency of the juice more like molasses or nectar. My mother is second. She is a beautiful dark skin woman who has 4 bi-racial children. She worked countless hours and jobs to make sure we had a good, stable, safe life. She worked thru LPN school, all while taking care of her family. She would go days without food and sleep. For a while, when my sister was sick, they had to live in the hospital. I stayed home with my 2 younger sisters and helped take care of things. My mother never gave up and passed nursing school top of her graduating class and passed her NCLEX the first time. My third inspiration is my sister Kelsei. She fell in love and married young. They wanted a family and tried several times. She had many miscarriages. She never stopped being a loving, kind sister/friend/daughter thru all of her struggles. Eventually, they had a baby boy, and he is amazing. I also inspire myself. Being in my thirties, I look back on my past and see how much good I really did despite all my faults and mistakes. I survived an abusive relationship. I donated a kidney without even thinking twice about it. I am known for giving my all to my people and helping those who need it most. I have come so far from where I was, and I am proud of that. What drives me? My kids drive me. The lifestyle I want drives me—the satisfaction of knowing I did everything and anything possible to help and be better. The fact that I am a mixed woman in healthcare drives me. Every person telling me I can't, I'm not worth it, it's too hard, I'm not enough is driving me and pushing me to be that much better.
    Unicorn Scholarship
    The first time I truly loved myself and who I am as a member of the LGBTQ+ community was when I got into a car accident. I was hit on the right passenger side and spun out. I hit a vehicle that was stopped at a stop sign and watched everything unfold. Other drivers rushed over to help me and call for help. The ambulance got there quickly, as well as the officers. My assigned officer was not at all professional. She quickly asked if I was intoxicated or had been smoking weed, I assumed because I'm biracial. I answered no to all questions as I was in great pain and crying hysterically. The ambulance took me to the closest hospital. There I was placed in the hospital hallway and told to undress and get in a gown. I could not move; I was in so much pain. I had to wait for a dr before I could get meds. As I gave my medical history to the nurse, I told them I had 2 children and 1 organ donation, my blood type and that I was not on birth control. I was told a woman of my age with 2 children already needed to be on birth control. I had informed them that I have been in a relationship with a woman for 4 years and that it wasn't necessary. I was then asked to give a urine sample for a pregnancy test. I refused their request and again explained that I was not having sex with men. I was given the dirtiest looks and then handed birth control pamphlets. After waiting for about an hour in pain, a dr finally came to visit. I asked all the same questions about my medical history and asked the nurse for my pregnancy rest. I had again informed the dr why I would not take one. The dr then explained that there was no way I would be receiving pain medication without a test. I begged the dr for something and was again refused. The dr stated I had to get a test to prove I was not having sex with men. I was sent off for tests, x-rays, and scans, all without medication. After I was cleared of any broken, broken, concussions, or internal bleeding, the dr informed me that I was lucky to be alive. She gave me my discharge papers, and I was informed that she could not do anything else because I refused to take a pregnancy test. They sent me home. My girlfriend was not allowed any information even after I signed release documents. This was the day I truly struggled to love myself while simultaneously learned to love who I am and who I love and promised once I finished nursing school, I would never let my patient be treated the way I was treated. I plan to introduce more education, training, and information into nursing school courses and job training.