Ashley N. Joyner
We're Proud to honor Ashley N. Joyner for her perseverance and hard work!
"When I saw "Hardwork Is Undefeated" is was a phrase that completely resonated with me on almost every aspect of what I embrace on a daily basis.
My mother had been diagnosed with Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia back in 2006 and spent most of my Highschool career studying to the best of my ability, attempting to keep my grades up, playing waterpolo, attempting to sleep roughly 5-6 hours a night, still live through my teenage years and cater to my mother's treatment regiment as a whole. On average, it was a biweekly occurrence to be at The University of Michigan's Cancer Center-Ravitz Center for infusions. For starters, the nurses, doctors, clerks and anyone who I've ever ran into embraced hard work, it was in their blood. What these amazing people did for every patient, and still do, are selfless acts that are consistently carried out every second of everyday. I learned a lot, alongside my mother, for four and a half years and I grew to not only appreciate these amazing individuals but was completely absorbed into the environment in which I became accustomed to. My love for medicine, especially oncology, flourished wildly.
September 14, 2010 was a night which will always be apart of me. It was the phone call that came through at 9pm with my Father stating, "It's important that you and your brother come down here". My mother had been airlifted from McLaren Hospital in Flint, was put into a medically-induced coma, and taken to the University of Michigan Hospital-ICU. She contracted pneumonia and her immune system wasn't strong enough to fight off the infection.
All 3 of us spent the entire night awake, we had been up 20+ hours. 3am rolled around when her attending physician popped in and you could instantly tell something was wrong.
"There's nothing more I can do.....I'm so sorry", with tears streaming down his face.
Mom had passed at 8am, September 15th, 2010. She was 52 years old.
The next five years were beyond challenging. I dropped out my sophomore year of college with what would have been 16 credit hours at The University of Michigan. I struggled to find work as I didn't have any solid work experience as a 19 year old and to pay for school because I desperately wanted to finish what I had started. There were two solid years within that time frame I had moved 5 times, both years, and times where I had to scrape by just to make it so I had gas in my tank and rent paid.
I'm here to tell you that I'm now proudly 26 years old, working on cancer research of my own, been accepted back to The University of Michigan and finishing my senior year, I have a wonderful career with Walgreen's Corporate Office in Canton, Michigan, and a beautiful home in Ann Arbor.
I never once lost sight of what I was taught by the staff at the hospital, it's what allowed me to keep pressing on despite what had happened with my mother. Her death turned into fuel for what I'm doing now in my every day life..
Hard work is Undefeated, it cannot be denied" - Ashley N. Joyner