With many young people today confronted by insurmountable challenges and obstacles, it is uplifting to see students with the ability, drive and determination to achieve academic success and develop a sense of purpose for their future. As commencement ceremonies continue this spring, some families have multiple graduates. Such is the household of proud parents Tyrone and Martina Washington with two daughters who graduated, Taylor and Morgan.
Taylor Washington graduated from Bowie State University receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a minor in Child and Adolescent Studies. Taylor has a passion for working with youth and helping others. Over the summer, she plans to volunteer at a youth center. In the future, she plans to attend graduate school and eventually work with Baltimore City Public Schools to create policies and programs to benefit youth.
Morgan Washington graduated from Owings Mills High School and will attend Morgan State University in the fall. She plans to major in early childhood education and become a Pre-K/ Kindergarten teacher.
"I am blessed to have beautiful and educated black women in my family who have made an impact on the lives of others. It is important to have positive role models in your life and I striving to be exactly like them," Morgan said.
Other sibling graduates include: Aliyah Gibson who graduated from Salisbury University with a Master's degree in Conflict Resolution and Dispute Management. She was awarded a graduate assistantship and worked as the graduate assistant for first and second student programs. Aliyah was also vice president of the Graduate Student Council. After graduation, she will continue as the graduate assistant through July while looking for full time employment. Her long-term career goal is to obtain a position at an HBCU working in the Office of Student Affairs and Student Programming.
Maiya Gibson graduated from Saint Augustine's University with a Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Biology. She received a full basketball scholarship during her freshman and sophomore years. She received both meritorious and STEM scholarships in her junior and senior years. While attending St. Augustine's, she was also inducted into the Zeta Alpha Kappa Mu honor society and was treasurer of her senior class. Maiya is also a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. She will pursue a Master's degree in Athletic Training at Salisbury University in the fall. Her long-term career goal is to work at a college or with a professional athletic team as an athletic trainer.
Jailyn Gibson graduated from Pikesville High School where she made the honor roll every year. She was both a scholar and an athlete. She was a member of the volleyball team for four-years; she ran track in her freshman and sophomore year; and served as the basketball manager in her junior and senior years. Jai received over $40,000 in scholarship offers and she has chosen to attend Bowie State University in the fall, where she will major in Psychology. She plans to attend law school and has aspirations to become a lawyer.
The Gibson sisters are very close. They both say that their mother, Deborah Gibson Ingram inspired them to succeed.
"She raised us to be God-fearing, intelligent and confident young women,” Aliyah said.
"She set expectations for us; held us accountable— our mama did not play with us— but always encouraged and supported us," Jailyn said.
“We watched her succeed at everything she did and we wanted to be just like her. The three of us want to make her proud,” Maiya added.
Congratulations to all graduates and continued success as you move forward!