McMain alumni joins Xavier College of Pharmacy

McMain alumni accepted to XULA’s College of Pharmacy
Posted on 06/04/2020

 In 2018, Coriell Chandler and Melody Davis graduated from Eleanor McMain Secondary School as second and third in their class, respectively, and now, two years later, both have been accepted in the Xavier University of Louisiana’s College of Pharmacy. 

Both are a part of Xavier University’s two and four year program in which they take two years of undergraduate programing before being accepted in Xavier’s School of Pharmacy.
Chandler was McMain’s Homecoming Queen her senior year, as well as a part of the student leadership committee, book club, and computer coding club. She was also Orleans Parish Student of the Year. 

Always academic-minded, Chandler took many gifted classes in high school and said she had a lot of support from her teachers. 

“I felt we received the best learning opportunity at McMain,” she said. “Because of it, I’m able to persist through anything.”
Davis, who was active in band and was drum major her senior year, had taken a break from her extracurricular activities her junior year. Having more time, she decided to take a chemistry class and fell in love with it. Finishing with the highest grade in the class, Davis began to reconsider her original career plan to become a chef.

“I liked the challenge of chemistry and thought I should do something academic,” she said. 
Both women said that helping people was their biggest motivation to follow this pathway.
“I want to be able to impact the underserved African American community,” said Chandler, who plans to become a clinical pharmacist. Her goal is to combat opiate abuse and “contribute to an optimal health outcome” for patients. 

“I like the way medicine can improve people’s lives and emotions,” Davis said, adding that she is still uncertain of the exact direction she wants to take her career, though she said she’s drawn to the idea of being a traveling pharmacist.
“They go into locations around the country where people are in need of pharmacists,” she said. “I don’t like to stay in one place too long, so this is appealing.”
Both students made history for being part of the first senior class of McMain to graduate after the school had become part of the InspireNOLA network.

“It was there that I learned that the work ethic you develop is more important than the grade,” Chandler said. “It’s not always about just getting the grade. Sometimes it’s about working hard and being on time.”

Davis remembered a band T-shirt they wore that had the school name on the front and “adapt or perish” on the back. 
“I think that really summed things up,” Davis said. “That was one of the greatest things I’ve learned; how to deal with change and adversity.”

She said those lessons set the bedrock for her college career. 
“I thought high school was really hard in showing us tough love,” she said. “But college is a whole other level of tough love.”

As these two alumni move forward on the next path of their lives, they shared some advice for current McMain students.
“Be present and always live in the moment. Before you know it, high school will be over,” Chandler said. “Have no regrets. Always be yourself and don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself.”
Davis advises students to find what makes them happy.
“Find what makes you want to wake up every day and that’s how you will be successful,” she said. “Any career is hard. Do the best you can and take it one day at a time.”