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Jada C.

Jada Curry grad pic with Chair.jpeg
University of San Francisco

Bachelor of Science in Physics

The biggest overall lesson I learned from College was the importance of expanding your personal and professional network. Having a personal support network ready to cheer you on while having professional connections that can help you expand your skillset has been so helpful.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned how to trust myself and my abilities better.

College can be very trying in the sense of chasing your end goals, ultimately graduation. I had to realize that all I needed to reach my goals was already in me; it was about expanding and building upon my skills and hard work to push myself forward.

What were your proudest accomplishments or highlights from attending college?
  • I passed my first college math class with an A (plus B- or higher in Calc 2 and 3)

  • I earned a fellowship representing USF nationally (Newman Civic Fellowship)

  • I maintained my job as a literacy tutor to support youth in the Fillmore

  • I had my first opportunity working with NASA (L'Space Mission Concept Academy)

  • I completed my first freelance writing job - I landed a job just before graduation

  • I am still contributing to my community throughout my time at USF (via the New Community Leadership Foundation and Department of Children Youth and their Families)

Rate your experience
at college:

Class of 2022

2020 & 2021 were extremely challenging under the confinement and constant menace of the Covid-19 pandemic. Hopefully there were some silver lining and lessons learned. 
What were the highlights or accomplishments of your Senior academic year 2021/22, after all that hard time.
  • I had my first opportunity working with NASA (L'Space Mission Concept Academy)

  • Passing my first college math class with an A (plus B- or higher in Calc 2 and 3)

  • Earning a fellowship representing USF nationally (Newman Civic Fellowship)

  • Maintaining my job as a literacy tutor to support youth in the Fillmore

  • I Completed my first freelance writing job

Thinking of the whole 4 years, what were the greatest challenges you faced? How did you overcome them?

One of the biggest challenges I faced was accepting my extended graduation timeline. I was stumped and lost when I realized that I would need to stay an additional year to achieve my goal of obtaining my Bachelor's in Physics. The financial stress, fear, and shame made me feel like I should settle for another path so many times. I kept picking myself up in the face of personal adversities and the shared stress of the covid and post-covid world to see my intention and purpose for why I was doing what I was doing.


It definitely couldn't have been done without the support of those around me. My family always gave me kind words, my friends with whom I shared study spaces. My support organizations, Bella included, called me, made plans with me, and even offered additional monetary support. It was indeed an effort of a village.

If you could go back in time 4 years ago, what would you tell your 18 year old self? If you could do-over, what would you do differently?

Embrace the unknown and accept that not everything about your path will be linear.

I'm unsure what I would do differently if I could return. My first thought would be to try harder in my math classes to move more efficiently throughout my program. But I give myself grace because I struggled to grasp what success looked like for a college student and how best to be a college student. I also think that if I had excelled from the beginning, I wouldn't have had the chance to build the sisterhood I was able to with my classmate whom I share so much of my success with because, without her, I truly believe my degree would be so so much harder.

What advice would you give to an incoming freshman?

Speaking to what I was saying in my previous response, accept non-linearity in your path and try your hardest to cast out comparisons.

Non-linearity in each path may look different, but it happens to just about all of us. You may need an extra year or two to complete your degree; you may have to leave school and come back later to support your family; maybe you finished your degree in 4 years but have no clue what's next. Whatever your case may be, do not let fear and doubt overtake your accomplishments when you are presented with roadblocks. You have and will preserver.

Additionally, comparing yourself to others will get you nowhere. No one else is living your life, sharing all your experiences with you, and walking every step with you, so do not obsess over where you are versus where others are. It will only stray you farther from your goals and remove the focus from yourself and where you need to be.

Now that you have graduated, have you formulated any new short term / long term goals?
  • assess the possibility of joining a bridge program

  • research grad school opportunities to start in 2 or 3 years.

  • continue Astronomy research!

How did being a Bella Scholar contribute to the success of achieving your goals?

Being an unshakeable support system that bended with the twists and turns of my academic path.

What is your current job? and your dream job?

Now working as a Physics and Astronomy Laboratory Coordinator. 

My dream is to become an Astronomer/Astrophysicist. 

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