2019 Scholarship Winner
Bowie State University
Christina Becton knew she wanted to work in health care ever since hit her head while wrestling her older brother when she was 7.
She was wrestling her older brother on the front porch and hit her head on a brick wall. She didn’t think much of it as she cleaned herself up a bit and thought she was fine. But when her father, who was a police officer, came home he told her she needed stitches.
Her experience with the nurses and doctor at the hospital helped launch her passion for health care.
But she didn’t take a direct path in following her dream.
She started working in banking in 2005, mainly because she liked the flexibility and wages and it was a good job while she was going to school. Then she started getting promoted and eventually had spent about a decade working in banking.
But when her brother was shot in 2008 and became a quadriplegic, she felt the pull to get back into health care.
“It was always the dream,” Becton said. She started taking classes again part time in 2012 and returned to school full time in 2015. She transferred into Bowie State University’s nursing program in 2016 and will graduate in May 2020.
Ultimately, she plans on going to graduate school and earning a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, ideally from Johns Hopkins. She plans to work in the field of pediatrics and has a lot of experience working with children.
Becton said she wants to go into medical research, too. Last year, Becton and two peers did research on sickle cell anemia and college students. They are working on finalizing their report from that study.
“I love research,” Becton said. “I like working with children with disabilities. I want to focus on that vulnerable population.”
Her drive back to health care can be seen in her education. She and a peer started using the student success center, something not many nursing students utilized. She said professors took notice and she’s helped mentor other students.
She is currently the student representative on the Department of Nursing Search Chair committee after one of her professors approached her about the opportunity.
Earlene B. Merrill, interim department chair said she has noticed Becton as a self-directed, goal-directed, dedicated and very conscientious student. She’s qualified as a candidate for the Bowie State University National Society of Leadership and Success, the nation’s largest leadership honor society.