Current Scholar Spotlight: Kyla Wilson

Kyla Wilson speaking to studentsKyla Wilson has put a lot of thought into her career path. “I always wanted to be a doctor or a lawyer, but I hate science so that didn’t work. As for the law, I like reading, but law just bored me!”

Enter her Uncle Jesse, who provided Kyla with some inspiration.

Her uncle would tell Kyla, who was good at math, that since she was in the fourth grade, she should know her multiplication tables. “He made me work in a composition book every day over the summer.” By the end of the summer, Kyla was hooked, and she knew that arithmetic was going to play a part in her future.

Having decided that math was the subject she wanted to study, Kyla needed to narrow down what, exactly, she wanted to do with her math skills. As a senior at the Dayton Early College Academy (DECA), in Dayton, Ohio, Kyla was able to do an internship with an accounting firm. “I was intrigued by accounting, but I didn’t really understand it. There were a lot of acronyms, and I didn’t know what they were talking about!”

Once she started classes at The Ohio State University, Kyla learned more about accounting and found it to be one of the most challenging things she’s encountered in college. “I actually saw growth in myself though my major, which I like. It wasn’t something that came easily to me. And I’ve also grown as a person because of it.” Now she is majoring in accounting with a minor in information retail studies.

That Kyla is at Ohio State, studying a major that she loves, hadn’t seemed possible a few years ago. “I never really thought about going to college because we didn’t have the means unless I had some type of merit scholarship.” But in her freshman year at DECA, Kyla was recommended and accepted into the Young Scholars Program. While in the Young Scholars Program, Kyla prepared for the Ohio Graduation Test and the ACT exam. She also came to campus during Summer Academy and the Summer Bridge Experience. “It got me into the mind frame that this was what college could be like. You go back to high school and think, ‘This is going to be my life in a couple of years.’”

Kyla is giving back to YSP and to the Scholars following behind her; she is a YSP Ambassador, a Peer Leader and an Academic Success Partner, assisting other Young Scholars in their transition from high school to college and helping them to overcome hurdles similar to ones she faced.

This past summer – her last before graduating from Ohio State – Kyla interned with L-Brands during an internal audit. That internship led to a job offer. In August, degree in hand, Kyla will start working at L-Brands in the Internal Audit department. She then plans to sit for the CPA exam within the next two years, a test that consists of four sections that Kyla says will each take two to three months of studying.

Kyla is grateful for all that YSP has done for her, and the people that she has encountered are ones that she will never lose touch with: “They are like family.” What YSP has done most for Kyla, she says, was to give her a chance not to become “a statistic.” She continues, “Being here [at Ohio State] is beating the odds. Being able to be that one out of the majority and meeting the standards that you’ve set up for yourself. And knowing that others have pre-conceived standards and being able to stand up to those as well.”


Prior Spotlights

Brandon Blackwell Spotlight

Brandon Blackwell Spotlight

Student athletes often can face some hurdles when pursuing their college degree. Whether it’s trying to maintain good grades or practicing for a sport at which they excel, taking full advantage of the resources available from the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) can alleviate some of the pressure of being a college student. Read more.

Alejandra Maíz Spotlight

Alejandra Maíz Spotlight

Conducting breast cancer research at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center is just one way that Alejandra Maíz has used the knowledge she gained in the classroom, working together with her lab group and expanding on those ideas. A junior studying molecular genetics – an area that interests her because of the inheritance patterns of traits and diseases – Alejandra is also using her skills by volunteering at La Clínica Latina, a free clinic held by Ohio State’s College of Medicine for Spanish-speaking individuals that provides on-going, comprehensive healthcare. Read more.

Ariane Krumel Spotlight

Ariane Krumel Spotlight

The Ohio State University has a lot to offer its students: 175 majors, 14 colleges, and an estimated 12,000 courses. But beyond the excitement those numbers can generate for incoming undergraduates, transfer students from smaller schools might find Ohio State a little bit intimidating with a campus that covers more than 1,700 acres, has 451 buildings, and boasts nearly 50,000 undergraduate students. Read more.

Michael Mullen II Spotlight

Michael Mullen II Spotlight

Michael Mullen II, a senior majoring in Film Studies, has found guidance and support for both life and classes at The Ohio State University from the Todd A. Bell National Recourse Center on the African American Male (BNRC). “Between Tai Cornute, Todd Suddeth, and Robert Bennett III, I have found a trio of educated mentors who have done much to help me succeed,” he stated. Read more.

Paloma Arroyo Spotlight

Paloma Arroyo Spotlight

Advocating for the importance of diversity is something that Paloma Arroyo has always been passionate about; she has participated in Latino Role Models Day and in the Gates Millennium-HSF Bridge Builders Forum, where she assisted faculty with informing Latino parents and their children about the college. Read more.

Kiara Brown

Kiara Brown

While in the sixth grade, Kiara Brown found out about an opportunity offered by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion’s Young Scholars Program (YSP) when staff from the Cleveland Young Scholars program came to speak at her school, the Cleveland School of the Arts. Read more.

Vincent Johns, Jr.

Vincent Johns, Jr.

Vincent Johns, Jr. has had a love for transportation systems ever since the age of four. “I chose to enter the field of civil engineering to help the aging infrastructure systems and to improve the safety and quality of our roads within our communities and nation,” Vincent stated. The need for infrastructure restoration was especially evident to Vincent in New Orleans. Read more.

L’Nard Tufts

L’Nard Tufts

Even before L’Nard Tufts attended his first class at The Ohio State University, as part of its 2010 cohort of the Early Arrival Program, the Todd A. Bell National Resource Center on the African American Male was there helping with the transition from high school to college. The BNRC’s Early Arrival Program introduced L’Nard to staff, faculty, and students who would become his mentors, supporters, and close friends. Read more.

Veena Phommarath

Veena Phommarath

For Veena Phommarath, The Ohio State University’s Upward Bound Program within the Office of Diversity and Inclusion offered the opportunity for her to figure out what direction her academic career would take, a “once in a life time chance,” as Veena put it, to experience what it would be like to be a college student. Read more.

Neil Ramirez

Neil Ramirez

Neil Ramirez is a self-proclaimed “STEM enthusiast,” someone who believes that knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields is important because “everyone should know how the world around them works.” When Neil was awarded one of the premier merit-based scholarships in the United States, The Ohio State University’s Morrill Scholarship, he had the chance to pursue his dream of a degree in Mechanical Engineering at Ohio State through the Office of Diversity and Inclusion’s (ODI) Morrill Scholars Program. Read more.


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