School: Florida State University

Year: Fall 2013 – Fall 2015

My name is Nyshira Jackson (in blue dress above) and like many other students in the Southern Scholarship Foundation I am the first in my family to attend a post-secondary institution. Since I was 5 years old I, along with my two siblings, was legally placed in the care of our Grandparents. Growing up, I never realized that my family was considered poor. We had an apartment to call home, we had food on our table, clothes on our backs, and most importantly we had each other. To me, you couldn’t get any richer than that! It wasn’t until I was in middle school did I realize that 3 of my 4 “riches” were provided by government money. My family had food because the government gave us food stamps. My family had that apartment because we lived in Section 8 housing. We had clothes on our back because of my Grandpa’s salary as a fruit/vegetable harvester and the check my Grandparents received every month for caring for me and my siblings. I realized that I didn’t want my family to continue to live a government assisted lifestyle. It didn’t take me long to find out that the only way I could make this happen, was for me to go to college and someday make enough money to take care of myself and my family.

I knew that no one would be able to help me

pay for college.

I got a job and saved as much money as I could. I kept my head in the books, ensuring I graduated top of my class. Towards the end of my junior year in high school a mentor told me about Southern Scholarship Foundation. In my head, I already knew I had the scholarship. Who could turn down a minority with good grades and no money? It didn’t take me long to realize that I could have easily not gotten the scholarship. There are many other minorities with even better grades and no money.

I am currently a junior at the Florida State University. Without Southern Scholarship Foundation I know that would not be possible. SSF has provided me with a home away from home, many wonderful life-long friends, and a reason to wake up and be thankful every single day. SSF is helping me get one step closer to my dream of an assistance free life and for that I will always be grateful!


(Far left, HM & Ambassador Appreciation Week Party 2015)

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