Tennessee Reconnect Spotlight: Adasha Simmons

July 29, 2022 | Betty A. Proctor | Internal Press Release

headshot of a women inside a circle

Tennessee Reconnect Spotlight will feature a first-person story each week...

My name is Adasha Simmons, and I am 38 years old. I was born in Knoxville, TN.  and graduated from Shelbyville Central High School in 2002. When I made the decision to go back to school, I honestly didn’t know how I would do it. I just knew it was necessary to be able to show my 3 children that you can do or be anything despite any circumstances or setbacks.

See, growing up I never had the best directions or advice given to me. I had to figure out a lot of things on my own. I had a lot of thoughts about going to college in my early years and even attended some, but being a young mother, I did what was most important to support my children. I worked so much to the point I was never home with my kids. I thought working was what they needed. I was wrong, the most important thing was being there for them.

I decided it was time to go back to school and knew no matter what, I was going to do it. I knew it would be hard, but I had accepted the challenge because I knew in the end, I could spend more time with them and not work constantly to provide. Going back to school was the absolute best decision I ever made for our lives, and the dedication I have to push through means a lot to me and my children. I knew with being a single parent that Tennessee Reconnect was available to help with my educational costs as well, which made the benefits of going to school that much more special.

I chose to attend Chattanooga State because I wanted a degree in applied science with a concentration in Nuclear Medicine, a field that I could relate to. I have been in healthcare for the past 13 years. I started with mentally disabled patients, psych, home health, and now I am currently in acute care as a travel technician for HCA at 7 different hospitals. I have worked in every single department from ICU, PEDS, Oncology and a lot more.

It is not the job that I love, it is the people. I love taking care of people. The passion I have for healthcare is big. I want to continue to make a difference in the lives of others as I know I already am. The degree I am seeking means much more to me than the grades and GPA. This is my life in every way.

I have a goal to be successful. I want to show myself and others that there are greater things on the other side of fear that you can, if you believe you can, whether others are single parents, someone struggling with depression, or someone who feels like they just cannot make it. I honestly did not think I could make it, but here I am. I overcame being a single parent struggling to know there is something greater out there for me and I am not going to stop until I get it.

Chattanooga State has been exceptionally helpful. I have had some of the most compassionate professors and tutors to help me and that made me feeI that I can achieve my goal, which is to be a college graduate. The resources that are available to help are endless and I could not be more grateful to one day be a Chattanooga State alumni at one of the best community colleges in the state of Tennessee and I say this because I am a student and have witnessed first-hand that dreams are what you make of them!

Interested in learning more about Tennessee Reconnect? Attend a virtual  information session on August 1, 3, 8, 15, 22, 25, or 29 at 5:30 pm. Also August 13 or 27 at 9 am. Sign up today here.