Editor's Note: This profile is part of a series that features the stories of graduates whose outstanding journeys have culminated in a UMGC degree.
Sarah Beckett always knew she would become a nurse and always valued education. But to get to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC), her most recent accomplishment, she drew inspiration from her two daughters.
This spring, while Beckett receives her degree from UMGC, her daughter London graduates from Coppin State University with a degree in criminal justice, and her daughter Raechel graduates from Towson University with a degree in advertising and public relations. Beckett’s milestone truly is a family affair.
“I was sitting on the bleachers watching Raechel during her high school graduation. Sarah, who knew that Rachel was college bound, sat on the bleachers and prayed. “This is my time, I thought. Let me graduate with my daughters.”
Nursing has always been in Beckett’s blood. “My mom used to wear white, my grandmother used to wear white with the little nurse’s cap and that always inspired me,” she said. “As a little girl, I used to pretend that my baby doll’s bottle was a syringe.”
Motivated by a strong interest in science and medicine growing up, Beckett earned a B.S. in biology from Morgan State University while she embarked on a 19-year career as a surgical technologist at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center, raising her children along the way. In 2018, she transitioned to nursing and received her associate degree from Baltimore County Community College. Today, Beckett works as a travel nurse, which takes her to positions all over the country.
Beckett instilled in her children the importance of focus and organization, traits that carried her through her educational journey.
“I had the opportunity to grow with my children,” she said. “Regardless of any obstacles that were in their way, they always remained focused.”
Today, Beckett plans to teach in a clinical setting or become an educator in a medical facility. Eventually, she will pursue a master’s degree, keeping pace with her daughters, both of whom will be continuing to graduate school. “I hope to move up the clinical ladder into a leadership position in nursing administration,” she said.
Faith is a guiding force in Beckett’s life, and she attributes much of her success to it. Her advice to others is simple. “No matter what trials and tribulations you may have in your life, if you stay focused you will get there,” she said. “And if you are a good example for your children, they will follow.”
The Beckett family story was featured on WJLA-TV (ABC-7) in Washington, DC.