Kettering University graduate thankful for support, structure education gave her during life’s hardships

Candayshia Lloyd ‘17, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.

For Candayshia Lloyd ‘17, graduating from Kettering University is proof that she can do anything she puts her mind to, even when life gets challenging.

Lloyd, a Flint resident - born and raised - graduated Saturday, June 17 with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. However, her passion has always been computers. Computer Engineering brought her to Kettering and life changes pointed her toward business.

Mid-way through her time at Kettering, Lloyd’s mother passed away and she also gave birth to her son, Carter. Lloyd changed majors in order to get her life and education back on track. Now, she plans to go to University of Michigan in the spring to pursue a master’s degree in Computer Science.

“When I came to Kettering everyone is very focused. Everybody is very rigorous with their studies here. Kettering is what I needed to settle down and discipline myself. After I had my child it was getting harder. I had to really buckle down,” said Lloyd, adding Kettering was exactly where she needed to be. “There’s a lot of support coming from people at Kettering. Everyone wants to see you succeed. It’s a great community of people for me.”

After her second year at Kettering, Lloyd was struggling to stay focused with everything that was happening in her life. She tried different pathways, such as training to be an emergency medical technician.

After a year off from Kettering, Lloyd realized Kettering was where she was meant to be. Working on computers and being in an environment of hard working students was what drove her to success.

After graduating from Kettering, Lloyd began working as a merchandiser for Mondelez International, the company that owns Chips Ahoy!, Oreo and Nabisco.

“I knew I had to make a way for my son. Kettering will give me the biggest advantage for my life.

Everything comes from Kettering - more scholarship opportunities, more support, more work relationships and business relationships,” Lloyd said. “Staff in the Office of Multicultural Student Initiatives really were my support system. They came beside me every step of the way.

“At first I didn’t think I needed people to guide me through school, but it changed my life. I wouldn't be in this position if it wasn’t for Kettering.”

Nadia Gilbert, Assistant Director of the Office of Multicultural Student Initiatives, said she is proud of Lloyd for how she pushed through to accomplish her goals.

“Candayshia persevered throughout her hardships; she faced a lot of obstacles in her personal life and academic career that could have easily hindered her success. When her mom passed away she felt alone and Candayshia felt as if she wouldn’t have the support she needed to continue on,” Gilbert said, adding she was honored to be there to support her whenever she needed it. “She kept her promise to us as well to herself to never give up and to strive for greatness no matter the struggles that faced her. Candayshia worked tirelessly towards graduation, it’s well commended now she’s on to the next chapter in her life were she’ll accomplish even greater experiences.”

When she walked across the stage on June 17, Lloyd knew she had accomplished something very important for her life.

“It means the whole world to me to get this accomplishment. This journey was so hard. I never thought this is the person I thought I would be. I’m a completely changed person,” she said. “I just wanted my son to see me walk across the stage. Just because I had him it didn't stop anything. Nothing can stop you if you put your mind.”