This is a glimpse of Nicole Berry’s academic self. I had the chance to interview and explore more in detail what this meant for her. Questions about how she has gotten to where she is now, and what makes her unique in her way as a student. Nicole is a first-generation student who graduated from Henry Grady High School in 2020 and currently majoring in Nursing at Georgia State Perimeter College. She later is planning on transferring off to the Georgia State University downtown location. These are the more general details about her, but Nicole is so much more than just you’re your typical “college student.” She is enthusiastic about her lifelong goals in her academic career.
While attending high school, Nicole was eager to reach out for more opportunities. She has a curious mind and a yearning to learn more. She explained to me that at the time there weren’t many resources to reach out to. She did what she could and searched for these resources herself. Nicole found an awesome summer volunteering opportunity at her local hospital. This gave her a path to a whole new environment and got her hands-on tools that could later help in college. She also got access to mentors at this hospital. After graduating high school, she enrolled at Georgia State. She told me, “College isn’t much different from high school, when I came to Perimeter I didn’t know that what we are doing here would be similar to doing work in high school”. I saw that as a sign of confidence. I believe it is because of the opportunities she had during high school.
As both Nicole and I continued to communicate. Three primary words clearly expressed her academic self as hard-working, motivated, and inspired to make changes in the world. She is very eager about learning new things. Nicole works a lot both in and outside of school. She dedicates a lot of time out of her day to focus on schoolwork and being a student. While at the same time having to also work on the side. We went into talking about how she also takes care of someone who has a disability. She takes her time to communicate, listen, cook, and clean for them. She is certain that having an education can help provide better care for the people around her. She mentioned that at the beginning of this semester that she ran into some issues regarding her schedule but managed to balance it all at the end of the day. I got to ask Nicole about where exactly her motivation originates from. She told me “I’m motivated to work to learn”, this is especially true for all of us as students but for her, it means she can impact the community around her. Another motivation for her is her family. She strives to make them proud. Inspiration is also one major component of Nicole’s academic self. She has had a vision since the age of nine. While at a doctor’s appointment for a family member who needed to get their tonsils removed. She knew it was meant for her from a very young age and has stuck with it since. Almost like a promise to herself. Just the fact that she does all this proves a very strong person.
While being as motivated and hardworking as Nicole. We all still run into small inconveniences. Nicole had said to me that she had closely related to the video on “How to get the most out of studying” video series specifically “Developing a Mindset for Successful Learning” with Dr. Stephen Chew. Her approach towards this specific video is that she is trying to get more effective with picking up information while studying. Not just skimming through unnecessary information. It is something she is personally trying to improve and continue to work on. She makes the most out of what she has and uses it wisely.
This interview allowed me to reach out and learn more about a person who works very hard. Even though Nicole has a very occupied schedule she still manages to make the most out of it. She is very inspiring as a person and as a student. She wants only the best for herself. I am super hopeful that her academic approach will lead her to become a great Nurse!