Iesha Finley finds success at Cox College

Iesha Finley was raised on the West side of Chicago. She is the third of seven children born to a single mother living in a Hispanic ghetto. At the age of 16, Iesha was kicked out of the house. This significant event motivated her to begin a path to be the best and go as far as she could in life.

With that determination, she finished high school and began college. While pursing her degree, Iesha became pregnant. Her fiancé decided to forgo his own schooling so she could continue working on her bachelor’s degree. She was able to stay committed and worked hard toward the goals she established. As a result, she graduated with a 3.7 GPA (with honors) while taking care of a one-year-old child.

After earning her Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with an emphasis in nutrition, Iesha decided to pursue a dietetic internship. The application process involved an online matching method with schools throughout the United States. Unfortunately, Iesha did not match up with any schools during the first round. However, her professor and the director of her nutrition program pulled her and other students aside to look at the vacancies still available. Until then, she had not heard of Cox College, but applied to all the internships that met her requirements.

A few weeks later, Kristen Williams, Nutrition Diagnostics Program Chair, along with Kyle Brashear, clinical professor, contacted her to schedule a phone interview. “It was one of the most nerve racking interviews,” Iesha recalls, “because not only did I not expect it, but I had a screaming one-year-old infant crying the whole time.”

A short time later, Iesha received a call from Professor Williams offering her a seat in the Master of Science in Nutrition Diagnostics/Dietetic Internship program. “I had an infant who depended on me to provide her with the best life possible, and I knew Cox College was the next step in achieving that,” Iesha said. She graduated in May, 2017, fulfilling her dream of completing her Master’s Degree in Nutrition Diagnostics.

Looking back on her time at Cox College, she is thankful for the professors who provided advanced, extensive knowledge. Iesha discovered there was so much more to dietetics and nutrition than she could have possibly imagined. Even though she dreamed of succeeding when she was younger, she never thought obtaining a Master’s degree was possible. Professor Williams believed in her ability, and for that, Iesha is thankful.