RUSTON, LA. (02/14/2020)– Victoria Coleman has always wanted to be a nurse, but when she had her own daughter at a young age, she didn’t know how she would be able to maintain her household, work, and go back to school.
“I was 17 and pregnant,” Coleman said. “I’m also a pastor’s daughter, so you can imagine the humiliation that I felt.”
After being accepted into the University of Louisiana at Monroe, she thought her life was finally on the right path.
“I did a year and a half with pre-nursing as well. I stopped because there were too many trials and triumphs that I endured and it seemed impossible at that point,” Coleman said.
Victoria eventually dropped out of school. She worked to keep her and her daughter, Lauren, afloat, but she wasn’t satisfied.
“I was fired from a few jobs, and I saw it as an opportunity to persue my career and persue my dreams, so that’s when I started at Louisiana Tech in the Spring of 2017 and I’m here now,” Coleman said.
Through the trials and errors, Victoria says it was her daughter, Lauren, who gave her the strength to push forward.
I’m just happy to be a role model for my daughter. She was like my biggest supporter, my biggest motivator, so to be someone that she can look up to is an awesome feeling,” Coleman said.
Victoria has one piece of advice for other students who are struggling through their own journey.
“Trials are going to come, there are obstacles that are going to be in your way, but with faith and determination and also the hard work that comes with that faith- it is possible,” Coleman said.
Through her journey she has not only inspired her daughter, but also strangers in the community.
“We are praying for you and we are just really really proud of you and I hope that this graduation gift blesses your heart as much as your story has blessed mine,” Alli Brister, a Ruston local, said.
“I have never had a stranger be so nice and so kind to me, she had many encouraging words. Just to have someone be so nice that doesn’t know me, you know, you never know who’s watching,” Coleman said.