A woman from New York who was given only three days of life at birth just achieved a huge milestone: graduating from college. She has far exceeded doctors’ expectations and has big plans for her future.
Graduating from college is an essential step in the life of many people, but for Nekhidia Harris the event it’s even more special, considering that doctors didn’t give her family hope of seeing her grow up.
Nekhidia, known as Nikki to her loved ones, was born with several health issues, including a rare condition that makes her bones brittle, meaning they break easily. She has the stature of a toddler and has broken dozens of bones and underwent surgeries to fix them through her 25 years of life.
"The doctors told my parents that I wouldn't be able to write, walk read and other motor skills," Harris, told Inside Edition.
However, Nikki proved that with determination everything is possible, and last week, she walked across the stage of the Berkley Center to receive her diploma from Medgar Evers College, in Brooklyn, New York, for her bachelor’s degree in social work.
"I was excited, and then I was like, 'Oh my gosh, I don't want to cry,'" she said of the special moment. "They were tears of joy that I really got to this moment."
Her entire family and friends were there cheering for Nikki, and her father Michael Harris, told ABC News that despite his daughter’s differences, no one has shunned her.
“Nobody treats her differently, because they see her as tall as they are,” the proud dad stated.
Nikki now plans to embark on a new journey to obtain a Masters’ degree at York College in Queens.
She said her father has always taught her to use her brain as her height, and that’s exactly what she’s been doing.
On top of being an excellent student and daughter, Nikki is also an inspiration to thousands through her family’s non-profit organization, the Harris Family Vision Foundation, which was created to help underprivileged kids to develop their talents.
“I like to help people and especially children that don’t have a voice,” said Harris. “And I love children, they gravitate to me, so I want to help them in every way I can.”
She also encourages people to never give up on their dreams and to give back, even if it’s in prayer.
“Or donate to an organization even if you don't have the funds to go all over the place,” she added. “Find an organization and do that. Don't let anything stop you."