Student Alicia Jacquard

Alicia Jacquard didn’t believe in success stories – until she became one. As a single mother of two young children, the decision to return to school was a difficult one. Her determination to succeed is fueled by her children who are always her source of inspiration.

“Due to circumstances earlier in life, I never finished high school. But being a single mom trying to give the best to my children was the push I needed to not only finish my high school degree, but to go to university.”

Admittedly, Jacquard wasn’t sure how things would work out for her when she made the decision to attend university.

“I was just living moment by moment figuring things out as I went along. Having a five-year-old daughter and two-year-old son, I knew they would need child care while I was in class and I would have to work to support the three of us while I was a student. I wasn’t sure how I would manage all of it.”

But everything changed for Jacquard with a simple phone call.

“I took the phone call during my psychology class at NSCC, where I was a student at the time,” says Jacquard smiling as she recalls being awarded the J & W Murphy Scholarship. “When the woman from Dal told me the news, it literally brought me to my knees. I laughed and I cried, I was so overwhelmed I didn’t know exactly what to do.”

Now in her second semester of her first-year of nursing, Jacquard is grateful to be able to enjoy her university experience and even finds time to volunteer with the IWK between classes, helping new parents who have little resources adjust to life with a new baby.

“Volunteering is something I’ve always loved to do. Helping people is my calling which is why I knew nursing was the best fit for me,” says Jacquard. “I think we all have the ability to help others; I feel fulfilled when I’m able to do that.”

“This scholarship means more to me than I will ever be able to truly express. Without it, I would have been more focused on the obstacles of being a single mother raising two small children, trying to work and earn an education, rather than being able to enjoy the journey of university. Being awarded this scholarship has forever changed the lives of me and my children.”