The Lessons My Mother Continues To Teach Me

Twenty years ago my mother taught me a lesson about perseverance that continues to resonate. In Hancher Auditorium, on the campus of The University of Iowa, my mother became the first member of our family to earn a PhD followed quickly by my Aunt Donna (her younger sister).

It wasn’t an easy process and I am sure there were times that she wanted to quit. I am grateful that she stayed the course.

Whether I get a PhD of my very own one day or not, my mother raised the bar for our family and said, “Reach for it, baby girl.”

She’s pretty awesome like that. 😆

Marta C. Youngblood is a writer, education and social entrepreneur based in Hot Springs, Arkansas. For more information on her current projects visit

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