Alumni of the Month: Lekia Jones
“Change the world, one student at a time.” This is the motto Arkansas High School Assistant Principal, Lekia Jones, lives by every single day.
Lekia is a true Texarkana hometown girl. She was born and raised in Texarkana, Arkansas and always dreamed of being a teacher. “Growing up, I would play school with the children in my neighborhood and community. Of course, I was always the teacher!”
While attending high school at Arkansas High, Lekia participated in the DECA program and worked in retail at Payless Cashways. Following high school graduation, Lekia pursued a retail marketing certification from Texarkana College. However, she faced many challenges in starting her post-secondary journey.
“I was right out of high school and working full time while attempting to go to college. My grades were slipping, and I decided to withdraw from TC and just work full-time in retail.”
After working in retail for a few years, Lekia made the decision to return to TC and changed her major to behavioral sciences. She knew that committing to complete at TC would help her reach her dreams in her career.
“My experiences at TC are some of the best years of my academic career. It was a tough time for me as I was transitioning from retail, trying to go to school, and was challenged academically. The staff and faculty at TC went above and beyond to help and support me. Even though my schedule was jam packed, they truly cared about me and are the only reason I made it.”
Lekia graduated from TC in 2003 with an Associate of Arts in Behavioral Science and continued her education at Texas A&M University-Texarkana where she majored in psychology and minored in interdisciplinary studies. Following her bachelor’s degree, Lekia received her first master’s degree in counseling psychology and her second master’s degree in education administration.
“I currently have 12 hours towards my doctoral degree, which translates into a superintendent certification. It’s my personal goal to receive my doctoral degree someday.”
As the 12th Grade Assistant Principal at Arkansas High School, Lekia encourages and prepares her students for graduation. “I encourage each of my students to pursue a post-secondary education or any type of career. I highly recommend TC and use my own experience to encourage them to never give up and to finish strong.”
One of Lekia’s biggest supporters is her son, Michael Jones, who is a Master Sergeant of the United States Air Force. He is currently stationed in Florida and is preparing for another tour in Turkey. “Michael is my pride and joy. My family and church family are also some of my biggest encouragers.”
Lekia has also had wonderful mentors throughout her life that have shaped her as a leader. “Two administrators who supported me along the way in my career are Terry Taylor and Dr. Robin Hickerson. They hired me for my first teaching position and have encouraged me to be a good teacher, administrator, and have been great role models to me.”
As a TC alum, Lekia is proud to be a bulldog. “TC is a great place to start or start over. I am proud of what TC has to offer to the Texarkana community and would encourage anyone to be a student there. TC hires the best and motivates everyone to do better.”
This is just the beginning of Lekia’s accomplishments in the Texarkana community. “When you set your heart on something and work hard, nothing can prevent you from reaching your goals. Be encouraged, stay motivated, and persevere. In the words of Epictetus: A Man is Not Finished When He is Defeated, He is finished when He Quits!”
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