Joe and Jada in 2018

Joe and Jada in 2022

After her son passed away, Ms. Barbara Boyd became the primary caregiver for her grandchildren, Jada and Joe. Jada is a 6th grader at Bunche Middle School while Joe is in 10th grade at Therrell High School and both have been Odyssey scholars since they were rising 1st graders.

According to Barbara, Odyssey has made a world of difference for both children. When Barbara thinks about the program, she shared that she appreciates how Odyssey, “makes learning fun in a relaxed environment where kids want to learn but also have time to laugh and socialize with other students who are serious about their education.” As a result of the support they received at Odyssey, both children are exemplary students!

Joe has always wanted to be a pilot. When he was a little boy, he would point up to airplanes in the sky and say, “Grandma when I grow up, I am going to fly down, scoop you up and take you anywhere you want to go.” Barbara is especially proud of the fact that Joe does his homework without anyone having to ask. He is a motivated student who is excited about his future. Barbara is grateful for Joe’s Odyssey mentor (who works at UPS) for helping him explore potential colleges and careers. This past summer, Joe especially enjoyed visiting Georgia Tech and Georgia State with his Odyssey classmates.

After attending Odyssey this past summer, Jada went back to school a master of lattice math (a method of multiplying numbers that uses a lattice). Her teacher was so impressed that she allowed Jada to continue using this method even though the class was using the back-to-math method. Barbara and her grandchildren religiously watch Grey’s Anatomy, and the show has influenced her decision to pursue a career as a doctor.

Barbara was born an only child and raised in the heart of Atlanta where she graduated from Washington High School in 1972. Education has always been a priority for Barbara who went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Home Economics from Morris Brown College and later earned her Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Georgia. For years, Barbara was a Chef’s Instructor at Atlanta Technical College, later becoming a Psychology professor. Barbara has also owned and operated a catering business that specializes in soul food. She has long been known for her fried chicken, but secretly shared that she prefers baked chicken herself. Her current hobby is exercise and she loves meeting with her water aerobics class every day.

If you would like to support scholars like Joe and Jada, please consider donating to Odyssey here.