RaShayla Walker, a nursing student at Oklahoma’s Rose State College, received the first Harvey Lincoln Scholarship Fund award at a May 11 luncheon following Rose State’s commencement. Nominated by Amber Mitchell, Director of TRIO Student Support Services, Ms. Walker has maintained a 3.1 GPA during her studies. She works part-time as clinical care specialist and is active in her college’s TRIO program and Student Nursing Association. She also volunteers with Habitat for Humanity.
An adult student, Ms. Walker started her college career in 2009 at Oklahoma City Community College but stopped out of college because of financial struggles. She returned to Oklahoma City Community College in 2012 and in 2013 was robbed at gunpoint. She continued to persevere and maintained a strong GPA while working, caring for her two young children as a single mother, and meeting weekly with a counselor at the college.
Ms. Walker says she is fulfilling the promise that she made to her younger brother who passed away in August 2016. She says her brother “would always tell me how he was so proud of me continuing to go to school and that he knew I would be an excellent nurse.” She wants “to be able to set an example for my siblings and kids.”
“RaShayla is a shining example of the talent and the promise that is in within each of us. Rose State saw that promise and gave her the support she needed to succeed,” said ATD Senior Vice President Carol Lincoln whose husband Harvey is honored through the scholarship fund.
Ms. Walker continues to face financial hardship, but she expects to be the first person in her family to graduate from college. Her educational and career goals are to complete her associate degree in nursing and then receive her bachelor’s and master’s degree so she can become a nurse practitioner.