Digital Original: UAPB chemistry major accepted into UAMS pharmacy program; not letting debilitating medical condition stop her from achieving goal

Digital Originals

PINE BLUFF, Ark. – One local student is hoping to show others that asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness but strength in higher education. 

By this time tomorrow, Kennede McLeroy-Charles will be a proud graduate of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff with a concentration in biochemistry. 

She says she never thought this day would come, being that she suffers from the debilitating medical condition sickle cell anemia. 


Kennede McLeroy-Charles maintained a 4.0 GPA  and graduated early amidst sickle anemia. 

She hopes to show others that despite obstacles – there are places for students with disabilities to go for help. 

“I wouldn’t be where I am today or who I am today if I didn’t express my disability, concerns and also goals with other people. Discuss your concerns and also goals to help people around you that can help you and help you obtain your goals,” says McLeroy-Charles.  

Kennede is expected to finish her medical degree at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences – where she plans on becoming a pharmacist. 

Tomorrow she will also be leading the commencement ceremony – seeing that she is graduating with a perfect 4.0 G-P-A. 

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