Sudanese refugee set to earn Ph.D.

Posted at 10:03 AM, Apr 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-24 15:11:01-04

Jane Abucha, Ph.D. is a mainstay on campus at Carrington College. As a professor of nursing, Abucha couldn't imagine herself doing anything else.

"I felt that it was my place," she explains. "That is what I wanted to do."

Her journey starts far, far away in Sudan, a country ripped apart by a deadly civil war. Her parents, at one point, were forced to flee, leaving her alone with younger siblings.

"I was the oldest of six children and I had to take care of my brothers and sisters and I had to go look for a job."

That job became her calling. She was forced to lie about her age just to secure employment as a nursing assistant and eventually rose through the ranks to become a nurse. Eventually, the unrest in Sudan led Abucha to Egypt and then to the United States.

She may have left her home behind, but always kept her dreams in her heart. 

"It gave me the courage to do what I needed to do and be persistent and be successful."

And that perseverance paid off. In the U.S., she became a nurse, but only after attending more school for more certifications, and she also faced more setbacks.

But she never gave up hope and along the way, gave hope to others. She mentors students, takes other nurses for educational trips along the border, and provided her village back in Sudan with its first ambulance.

"Many people have inspired me and I have inspired a lot, and I continue to inspire."

Abucha there's even more reason to be inspired -- for the first time ever, even though she has multiple degrees, Jane will walk in a graduation ceremony this May when she formally receives her Ph.D. diploma.