Aya Osman is an 18-year-old African American student from Orange Park, Florida, who never for once allowed the perils of cancer to slow her down. The prodigy has been battling cancer over the last two years. Yet, she rose above all potential obstacles to eventually graduate Summa Cum Laude from high school. Aya further received something inspiring after she was awarded a full scholarship to attend New York University.
Aya Osman always wanted to become a neurologist since she was 12. However, that dream was challenged when the doctors diagnosed her with cancer. Instead of feeling demotivated and sad, Osman courageously put up a fight against all odds.
The aggressive treatment to remove the tumour in her arm meant undergoing 6 months of chemotherapy sessions every three weeks with 3-day hospital stays.
“The first thing I thought was, ‘What will I tell my friends? How am I supposed to manage, you know, arguably the hardest year of high school?’ I wasn’t thinking too much about the logistics of what came with being diagnosed with cancer,” Osman told a local news outlet.
“As serious as cancer is, you don’t think that much long-term,” she said. “You sort of look more so in the moment.”
Aya Osman became engrossed in schoolwork and social activities.
“It helped to distract yourself, and no matter what it may be, whether it was piano or schoolwork,” Osman told Clay Today.
“It definitely helps curb the side effects of such a great diagnosis. It helps keep put your mind at ease and keeps you focused about something else.”
Osman’s mother brought her laptop to the hospital so she wouldn’t lag in her studies. She kept up with her International Baccalaureate schedule as doctors monitored her progress. “I did everything on my laptop,” Aya said.
“So you know, I was laying down on my hospital bed and the nurses would come in checking heart rate, checking my temperature and whatnot. While I would be rushing to finish an essay for IB history or English or having the distraction of schoolwork, to be able to focus on something else really helped.”
As a result, her diligence in schoolwork paid off when she graduated Summa Cum Laude from Ridgeview High School with an impressive 4.77 GPA.
Additionally, she was awarded a scholarship to attend New York University, with assistance from the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation, an organization dedicated to supporting children with cancer through financial and emotional support.
Aya, who is now cancer-free and 2 years into remission, is set to pursue a major in biology at New York University with the scholarship in hand.
Bravo Aya Osman!