For Jordyn Blythe, embracing future challenges also means learning from the past.
One such lesson hit home for the Honors College student last Summer, when Blythe learned from her father the story of her first-born brother’s death decades ago as an infant.
“The doctor was very dismissive and told my parents to wait until Monday to bring him in. He died that Sunday,” she said. “I refuse to believe if my parents were white that would have happened.”
Her family’s tragedy and a growing desire to address systematic racism are motivating her to consider a career aimed at resolving health and race-related disparities.
“I’m really interested in disparities affecting Black women,” said Blythe, a Communication Studies and Political Science double major set to graduate in Spring 2022.
Whether she chooses among her options to work for not-for profits or pursue a career in law or politics, she’s already displayed considerable mastery related to leadership and affecting change.
Empowered by parents who place a high value on community involvement, Blythe came to the University, having formed the Black Student Union at her high school in Normal, Illinois.
At Ball State, she co-founded the Student Anti-Racism and Intersectionality Advisory Council, volunteered as a Cardinal Corps Ambassador, was vice president for the Student Government Association, and president of the Delta Phi Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., a Black sorority.
Blythe attends the University on a Whitinger Scholarship, which recognizes exceptionally talented Honors College students and is considered Ball State’s most prestigious scholarship.
She said the college was “a huge draw” for deciding to attend Ball State. “The Honors College teaches you how to be a good person, an ethical person, and to listen to different perspectives, to come together to create something beautiful from that.”
Blythe shines as a dynamic communicator, having participated on Ball State’s Speech Team since freshman year. She’s also already completed requirements for a Spanish minor.
Looking to the future, she urged Ball State to intensify ongoing efforts to construct a more inclusive curriculum supporting a free exchange of ideas.
“As long as Ball State continues creating more outlets for students to express their opinions and feel they’re being heard, the University will be advancing more rapidly,” she said. — Susan DeGrane