“I tell anybody that I’m probably one of the most fortunate people in the world, because I was raised by both my parents. I know how rare that is nowadays. With a two-parent household, you get the best of both. My mother is the best nurturer. There are things that she has taught me that my dad couldn’t. But there are also things my dad taught me that my mother couldn’t teach me.

So, no matter how hard a single mother or single father might try, it’s hard for them to play both roles. You really need both parents. Everybody that I know who’s from a single parent household wants that other parent there. They know that there is something missing. That’s why I feel fortunate – I have both parents and I have Jackson State.

My favorite thing about Jackson State is the motto, ‘Challenging Minds and Changing Lives.’ Some people think of it as just educational. Some people think it’s supposed to be just fun. But challenges are not fun. It’s not always going to be fun. 

And, as SGA president, I’ve been able to see some of the stuff students complain about, and yes, we try to fix those things. But those things are also the things that shape you for the future. For some students, the challenges deter them from wanting to give back to Jackson State or be involved with the university.

But, my grandma used to say, ‘The challenges that y’all face today, are ones we would have fought to have.’ 

So I love that Jackson State really has challenged me, in almost every way – academically, mentally, physically and spiritually. And everything helped move me in the right direction. Another one of my favorite things is the attitude that almost every alumnus I’ve every met has about JSU. That love that they have for this school is what drove me here. 

Jackson State is literally the only school I applied to. I had an aunt that went here, my uncle went here, my dad went here for a little while, and my brother and sister went here. And I hear  how people talk about other schools, but the way they raved about JSU made me decide to take a visit. And when I took that visit, during homecoming of my senior year in high school, the atmosphere here changed my life. And I said this is really the only place I want to be. So I wouldn’t trade these four years for nothing.”  

                                                 – Kendall, 2017 spring graduate, accounting major from Olive Branch, MS.