First-Generation Student Azhia Brown:
ENJOYING BOTH THE JOURNEY AND THE DESTINATION
Geographically, Azhia Brown hasn’t traveled far—she grew up in Atlanta, went to school at Georgia State, and has now started her career in Atlanta. In terms of personal development, though, she’s gone further than she ever imagined.
“Looking back on who I was at the beginning of my senior year [of high school], I have grown so much,” says Azhia, a first-generation college student now working as a financial analyst for Turner Broadcasting.
Even in high school, though, Azhia knew that going far away to college wasn’t nearly as important as finding a place that was a good fit for her. “I did not want to be at a school that, although it may have had the ‘traditional college experience,’ was in a town where I didn’t see myself building a life,” she explains.
With the help of the John M. Dyer First Generation Finance Scholarship, Azhia was able to attend college in the middle of downtown Atlanta. But she didn’t miss out on the trappings of a “traditional college experience,” either. She worked as an assistant at the student center and then served as director of PR and social media for Campus Events; she was also a resident assistant at University Commons for two years. “Seeing all the freshmen coming in, I was just so involved, and I made a lot of connections,” she says. “It really made me one with the campus.”
Azhia says she’s personally grateful for the Dyer Scholarship because “it meant someone believed in me. Being a first-generation college student, scholarships like this are just something that we talk about, nothing that ever happens to people like me. But now I can say somebody believes in me enough to support what I am doing.”
It’s also having a ripple effect on Azhia’s family, which will soon have a second member in college.
“My parents learned a lot from my experience, too,” she says. “I have a 16-year-old sister who’s gearing up to go to college, and this has helped them start getting her prepared way earlier than I did.”
Believe in a Georgia State Student
Your support gives students like Azhia the confidence to pursue their academic dreams. Contact Natalie Baker at 404-413-3425 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn about the many ways you can invest in the education of a Georgia State student.
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