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Rachalia Smith comes from Albany, GA, but she was raised in various cities due to military ties. Her family’s personal struggles with major health issues led her to an early career in healthcare, beginning with a high school nursing course. She excelled in her classes and gives thanks to God for her ability to become a CNA as a dual-enrolled student.

As a CNA, she worked private duty for six years in nursing homes, home health, and a center for adults with disabilities. After these six years, which included ups and downs and having her first baby, she found the courage to go back to school to become a nurse. She attended the LPN program at Columbus Technical College despite external constraints, including a difficult pregnancy with her second child.

Thanks to God, her own personal strength, and Dr. Harbison, Rachalia was able to create a plan to prevent her from missing a single day of nursing school. The COVID-19 pandemic, the loss of family members, and postpartum depression were a hard part of her journey to success, but Rachalia is so grateful to God and her support system for helping her achieve a career and life she loves.

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