Aisha Thompkins, daughter of Angie and Willie Thompkins and the paternal granddaughter of Easter Lee Frazier, has been presented with a unique opportunity to go study abroad in the Czech Republic starting Feb. 2.
Thompkins, now a senior honor student who is majoring in criminal justice at Florida Agriculture and Mechanical University (FAMU), says that studying abroad as an exchange student wasn’t something she could’ve imagined even in her wildest dreams.
This international education opportunity is only offered to students with a 2.7 GPA or higher and getting there hasn’t always been easy for Thompkins.
“After struggling with personal issues, I didn’t know where life would take me,” said Thompkins. “All I knew was that I had to keep going, and school was my only outlet from my day-to-day crisis.”
Thompkins attended Madison County High School for the beginning of her high school years, but then transferred to Jefferson High School for her 11th and part of her 12th grade, before returning to MCHS to graduate.
Throwing herself into her studies, Thompkins was presented with this opportunity in the fall semester of 2014.
Thompkins says that being a minority at a university has helped her to fully capture other people from all walks of life and become aware of cultural differences.
Thompkins is the first member of her family to ever study abroad; “[It will be] such an experience,” Thompkins said.
Being given this chance opportunity, Thompkins will be able to share her knowledge, experiences, statistics and adventures with others while away and once she returns.
The choice to go to the Czech Republic was an easy one; Thompkins remarks that particular country has always sparked her interest.
“I’ve always wanted to explore the old town hall and walk the Charles Bridge,” said Thompkins. “I want to further my knowledge of the Czech history, culture, language and its people.”
Thompkins chose to go for one semester because she believed it would be enough time to get a good grasp of the Czech Republic and its way of life.
This international education opportunity is one that Thompkins wishes to encourage all students to look into, “Life is going to happen, so live,” said Thompkins.
Not forgetting her roots, especially in this time of adventure, Thompkins said that coming from a small town only made her humble, “[It] made me appreciate the small things in life,” said Thompkins. “It didn’t limit my vision, nor did it make my dreams any smaller.”
Thompkins will be leaving for Prague on Feb. 2, and will be returning home on May 21, 2016.
Those who would like to help sponsor this opportunity that has been achieved through dedication to learning and hard work can do so by contacting Angie Thompkins at (850) 242-2368 or Aisha Thompkins at (850) 363-9112.