Seventeen-year-old Makayla Nobles could have easily given up on her future for herself and her infant son. Becoming a teen mom can derail a young woman’s educational goals, but Makayla, an OTC Middle College student, persevered. Now, her future goals are to earn her high school diploma, get a nursing degree and become a labor and delivery nurse in Springfield.
Middle College is an alternative high school environment for juniors and seniors who face challenges in a traditional school setting or just seek a different educational atmosphere.
“I really didn’t know what to do with my future. I was failing my future. I had a baby to support. I had to schedule rides and babysitting,” she said.
Makayla got a letter one day while attending Parkview High School telling her that she had the opportunity to enroll in the OTC Middle College.
She jumped at the chance.
“It was the best decision I ever made. Everything is great here now. If I have a problem, I can go to the faculty or somewhere on campus to get help.”
Makayla has an internship at Mercy Hospital where she handles medical records.
“It’s challenging but it’s well worth it,” Makayla said, adding that she will be going to work for a dialysis company after she graduates from high school.
Tiffany Brunner, college director of the Middle College, said Makayla has grown up while attending classes at OTC.
“She is a resilient person in a challenging situation. She has turned it all into an opportunity to advance,” Brunner said.
Brunner said the goal of Middle College is to help all students succeed despite the difficulties they might be facing.
“It is not uncommon for teenage girls to get pregnant. We look at it as how can we help them in their situations by utilizing their talents,” she said.
Thanks in part to the Middle College, Makayla will soon find herself delivering babies and building a bright future for herself and her son.