Jamall | UCAN Alumni

Jamall photoI desperately wanted to attend college, but I knew my high school records and former perspectives in life created an unfortunate circumstance. At that time, I had full time employment but saw myself trapped inside the world of being over worked and underpaid; I wanted a change. I wanted my life to encounter and create new possibilities not usually afforded to my family and friends; however, I did not know how to go about finding those opportunities that would open the doors necessary for the change that I desired. That was until I met Dr. Rowe.

I met Dr. Rowe in 2006 and told him that I was willing to attend whatever school he believed would be good for me. As a result of that conversation, I moved to Jackson, MS to attend and graduate from Tougaloo College with a Bachelors Degree in Interdisciplinary Humanities. It was a complex and rich experience for me and one for which I am grateful. I attended the Divinity School at Yale University after graduation where I received my Masters of Divinity and then Union Theological Seminary in NYC where I earned a Masters of Sacred Theology. Currently, I am studying at Union Theological Seminary where I am earning a PhD in Philosophical Theology while also involved in the African American studies (IRAAS) dept. at Columbia University.

I am more than grateful for my experience with UCAN and if there is any advice I can give to the future and current students, it would be to remain faithful and committed to the dreams and goals you have. Let nothing slow you down other than better planning; let no one get in your way unless they’re trying to get you back on track; forgive yourself for mistakes and encourage yourself when you need it. You can be your worst enemy and your best supporter. As much as possible, always lean towards being your best supporter.