Skip to content

EdNC. Essential education news. Important stories. Your voice.

Stories from the Education Pipeline: Kizzie Harrison on balancing education goals with life’s obstacles

Kizzie Harrison, Nash Community College student and mother of two, thought she would get back on track towards earning a postsecondary degree at Nash Community College after the death of her son’s father was too overwhelming to continue school years before. 

Then her daughter got sick. After many tests, surgeries, and hospital bills, Harrison started confiding in the college’s Single Stop program and Dean of Student Wellness Marbeth Holmes. Her daughter was eventually diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. 

“I cannot tell you how just sitting in that office and crying with someone who is clinically able to understand the burden that you can hold trying to pursue college, take care of family, and work, and your financial world is crumbling all at the same time,” Harrison said. “… Going in there and talking to her helped me so much.”

Watch below to hear about how Harrison is planning to use her culinary degree to provide five-star cuisine to individuals with dietary conditions and restrictions. This is the third video of a series of stories on individuals across North Carolina with nontraditional educational pathways. Read about North Carolina’s leaky educational pipeline at

Liz Bell

Liz Bell is the early childhood reporter for EducationNC.