Jackson native graduates JSU years after losing sight, her vision of helping others

Cathy Maberry
Cathy Maberry(JSU)
Published: Dec. 15, 2021 at 11:49 AM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Despite visual impairment, Cathy Maberry sees better than many people.

She envisioned the life she wanted and stopped short of nothing to live it.

More than a year ago, Cathy Maberry lost her complete eyesight. Still, she was able to walk across the stage to receive her bachelor’s degree in health, physical education, and recreation at Jackson State last week. She plans to become a certified therapeutic recreation specialist.

“Jackson State University means so much to me,” Maberry said. “I am so grateful for everyone’s continuous support. At times, I wanted to give up, but with my JSU family, I persevered.”

Medical issues caused Maberry to lose her sight in 2017 partially. And less than three years later, she went completely blind but never lost sight of her graduation goal.

“It is a pleasure to celebrate this milestone with Cathy,” said Arron Richardson, Ph.D. assistant director for Disability Services. “Despite challenges and setbacks, she consistently fought her way through trials and emerged victoriously.”

While at JSU, Maberry interned at the G.V. (Sonny) Veteran Affairs Medical Center in the Department of Recreation Therapy.

From that experience, she discovered her passion for helping others. She aspires to work in rehabilitation, helping people who have experienced life-changing situations similar to hers.

“I want people to look at me and know I make the best out of my circumstance,” Maberry said. “Jackson State played a vital role in helping me gain the confidence I needed to reach my educational goals.”

And the Jackson, Mississippi, native credits her family, mentors, and professors for their support.

“I became a better student, friend, and relative because of my support team,” she said.

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