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Ever since my accident, I knew from day one I was gonna be at this point.
I never knew how I was going to get there.
And after meeting Susie and Dr. Hodes,
I knew right away this was the right place to be,
out of any other option I had in the world.
I knew that here at the University of Louisville,
with everything they’re doing behind the research it was an amazing opportunity.
It’s clear that there is a path here for people with paralysis.
There’s a lot of research to do.
It’s going to take a lot of resources to do that, but we know what to do.
We know what the next steps are.
Rob really looked for us, looked for this program.
And that requires a little something beyond what many people have.
I just try and take everyday one day at a time,
and make sure that what I’m doing is not only benefitting myself,
it’s going to benefit the doctors’ research,
but also the millions of people out there who are suffering.
When you have an opportunity to put great minds together,
you can accomplish anything.
My name is Nicole Wilkins and I am the
first graduate of the Cardinal Covenant Program.
Which was a program that gave me the opportunity
to go to UofL and get a quality education.
I’m proud to say that, I’m glad that UofL offered me that program
and I’m really glad that I was able to utilize that program
to help me get my education from a quality university like UofL.
Growing up in Crowfton, was a little interesting as we have a caution light.
And it’s a very, very small town.
I wanted somewhere where I could be in a bigger city
and have more to do and get a better education.
If I hadn’t been awarded the Cardinal Covenant Scholarship,
I would’ve been in debt in student loans, still trying to finance my education.
It’s an honor to be the first Cardinal Covenant Graduate because it shows
that the initial program UofL setup is paying off,
and doing what they intended it to do.
To go to a school that is willing to invest the money
to help you get your education is a big deal.
It means that they’re willing to take a risk, in a sense,
that these students are going to turn out to be quality scholars and quality alums.
My experience and UofL and being able to attend UofL was amazing.
It was a life changing opportunity for me.
I’m Mike Jones and I live in Louisville.
I had a heart attack in 2004, probably August to September 2004.
And then I felt ok after that,
but I started filling up with fluid, like congestive heart failure.
I went into a convenient store and just happened to see a Courier
laying in the rack and it mentioned the stem cell study at UofL.
I had gotten knowledgeable about stem cells
because of the political uproar about it.
So I tried to educate myself somewhat on it.
And I realized this was an adult stem cell test,
and it just seemed like the perfect thing for me at that time.
It’s pretty remarkable that here in Louisville we have got a university
that has an atmosphere where creators like Doctor Bolli,
and I’m sure that many others, can come here, they can have an idea,
and they have an environment to let that idea grow until it becomes all it can be.
My name is Marcus Blakeney, this past May, May 2011,
I graduated from the University of Louisville with my Bachelors of Science
and Middle School Education, concentrated on Math.
And now I’m back at the University of Louisville getting my
Master’s in Reading Education.
I see a change in myself. I see growth, I see maturity.
I see somebody different than when I entered at UofL in 2007.
This is where a lot of things have happened for me.
I’ve traveled internationally through the University of Louisville.
Of course, the University of Louisville
helped me achieve my dream of becoming a teacher.
Through UofL and their Woodford R. Porter Scholarship,
I was able to afford an education.
So of course, when I speak here at the University of Louisville,
I can’t do anything but smile. I bleed red.
So now I’m getting my Master’s at UofL. I’m working as a graduate assistant.
I look forward to the upcoming football season.
I bleed red.
And definitely a big thanks to the faculty and staff at the University of Louisville.
They are the ones who encourage you along the way, they advise you,
they mentor you, they keep you connected,
they open even more doors for you.