Scholarship funds help mother pursue her dream

UC Online student dedicated to early childhood education

Monikia MurrayMonikia Murray’s pursuit of her bachelor’s degree has been a long journey. As a single mother working full-time, sometimes with a second job, her dream of earning a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education hasn’t been easy.

“It’s very challenging,” the UC Online student says. “Life does not stop. This is a milestone I really need to complete. I’m almost at the finish line.”

Recently, the finish line began to fade because of a lack of funds. Not only was she paying for her own classes, but her daughter had started college. Monikia was concerned she would have to defer her dream again but reached out to her academic advisor for help.

This future teacher received support from the Frances A. Kemp Scholarship which was established in 1990 by the estate of Hazel N. Kemp to provide scholarships in the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services (CECH) for students studying early childhood education. She also received help from a CECH emergency fund.

“I had tears of joy when I found out,” Monikia shares. “To receive financial help is just unbelievable. It was a blessing. Mentally, it took the stress away of how am I going to do this and maintain everything else on my plate. It just took a burden off me.”

UC Teachers' CollegeNow in her second to last semester, Monikia will graduate in 2021. As a 20-year Head Start employee, she says her degree will enhance her skills and prepare her for her next goal, a master’s degree.

“It will be a big accomplishment; I’ve worked so hard for it,” she said. “It will be well worth it.”

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