Nathaniel M. Kirkland Scholar: Shayla Whitmore

I always found myself being present in various clubs and activities in High School like "Nate" did. He was the President of his school's AudioNisual Club, and I am currently the active President ofmy school's National Honor Society Program. Nate was always one to explore and he knew exactly what he wanted to do in the future, just like me. 

One thing that I can say about Nate is that he loved his community. As many know, Nate was involved heavily around his college campus/community. Although I am not in college yet, I do help out in my High School and around my community. I have recently volunteered at Philabundance to help sort foods so that they could be shipped off and brought to families that need them. It always brings a smile to my face when I know that I have helped so many people. 

​Nathaniel was loved by many, and never forgotten. His brother Terrell Bruce created the N.M.K Foundation to honor him.Terrell's twin brother Brandon changed the name of the scholarship in honor of Terrell. Nate was a very caring and passionate person just like I me. No one can ever be Nathaniel M. Kirkland, but if it was up to him, I'm willing to bet he'd be honored to have people sharing the same life he left us with. Such a gentle soul. I think that Nate's life is one for the books. No, he wasn't a huge famous Hollywood star, but people viewed him as a caring and honest contributor to his community. 

Nate knew what he wanted to do in life, as I know what I want do in mine. I need to help people. I realize that I can't prevent individuals from experiencing hardships, but if I can help relieve a little of their suffering, I will have fulfilled my life's purpose. My entire life I've been receiving help from others. Now it's my tum to give back. Everyone should see life as I do and Nathaniel did. It seems that Nate would not let anything stop him from his goal in life. Always think positively and remember it is not up to someone else to be the change that we want to see. BE THE CHANGE. 

​- Shayla Whitmore (Excerpts from personal statement)