By Leona Dunn
Meter Staff Writer
Mikayla Jones came to TSU last Fall, as a freshman ready to start her college career with nothing but high hopes, big dreams, and 24 credit hours. In a year, she’s accomplished being Miss Honors, a business owner and a junior that will have enough credits to graduate in three years.
“ I always try to take advantage of every opportunity I have because there are just too many out here to just let them go to waste like that, and I am constantly telling people, ‘don’t take no for an answer because most of the time no just means not right now,’” Jones said.
Mikayla started her own cookie business at Tennessee State University her freshmen year by taking advantage of a missed opportunity and getting the little encouragement she needed from her fellow students.
“The business literally just happened after I tried to run for Miss Hale Hall, I bought all this stuff to make cookies for my campaign then didn’t make them in time,” Jones explains, “so by networking with random people in the cafeteria, one day I met a boy who lived in the apartments. I told him about all this material I had just sitting in my room, so he let me use his oven and we made cookies.”
Surprised by the reaction she got when she walked back into her dorm with all of these cookies that sold so quickly, she decided maybe she would make this a re-occurring event.
“I walked into my dorm with these cookies that I was selling, and in thirty minutes, everything was gone. It only took thirty minutes,” Jones said.
When it comes to school, Mikayla shows the same drive and initiative through her schoolwork that she does in her extra-curricular activities. Her goal is to eventually be the CEO of a hospital located in an area with a huge Hispanic influence which aligns perfectly with her health science major with a minor in Spanish.
“I was going to do the degree in three program, but decided to stay all four years so that I could get the opportunity to study abroad and immerse myself in an environment of people that speak fluent Spanish, because I feel like I will learn easier that way,” Jones said, “and I really want to be fluent in Spanish before I leave college. That’s a major goal I am trying to accomplish.”
As for the cookie business, Jones plans to foster that into a million dollar corporation so that it can eventually run itself. Currently it’s an online based business located out of two cities; Nashville and Cleveland. Jones takes orders through social media and word of mouth. Eventually she would like to get a storefront and have it as an underground artistic gallery, where her cookies could just be snacks compared to everything else going on in the center full of enlightenment.
“Since I do other things, sing, dance and spoken word- I guess I am just looking for a place here I can bring everything I have to offer together,” Jones said, “ I feel like if you’re not dreaming big you’re not dreaming at all and I want everyone to remember when it comes to opportunities, closed mouths never get fed.”