Dr. Addison Zaya is passionate about many things. Two of her biggest passions: helping
others and playing volleyball were nurtured at Midland College (MC).
“I lived in the dorms with the volleyball team and my experience was so much fun,”
remembered Dr. Zaya. “I immediately made life-long friends with my teammates. We worked
up to five practices a day all for the love of the game.”
Dr. Zaya and the Lady Chaps won back-to-back conference championships the two years
she played and studied here.
“Winning conference each year just added to the fun during my time at MC,” said Dr.
Zaya. “I also loved my classes. Midland College was the perfect place to start my
higher education. Tuition was more affordable than starting at a university. Classes
were smaller and more intimate. The challenging work professors assigned was pivotal
in preparing me for my future in the medical field.”
Dr. Zaya also credits volleyball for teaching her important lessons.
“Any team sport forces you to know, trust and rely on each other,” said Dr. Zaya.
“Those lessons carry over into every aspect of life, especially healthcare.”
Playing sports has also taught Dr. Zaya valuable time management skills.
“I would travel a lot with the team so I had to be on top of everything,” said Dr.
Zaya. “I was very busy, but the professors, faculty, staff and coaches helped me succeed.
They wanted me to do well so I could move forward in my education. They were always
looking to the future. Everybody was very invested in me and wanted to see me do bigger
and better things.”
Dr. Zaya’s teachers and coaches say she still stands out in their memories.
“Addison is the true definition of persistence,” said Tammie Jimenez, Women’s Volleyball
head coach at MC. “She had goals for herself, athletically and academically, and MC
was an avenue to help her achieve those goals. From the minute she arrived on campus
until her graduation, she remained committed and focused. Her dedication is a true
example of the qualities we hope all our student-athletes can emulate.”
“Addison was an absolute delight during her time at MC,” said Terry Gilmour, professor
of Government at MC. “She was an outstanding student. It has been so rewarding to
watch her continue her studies and achieve all of her academic dreams. She left her
mark at MC and she will continue to leave a mark as she begins her professional career.”
Dr. Zaya’s academic dreams continued after MC, taking her to Hardin Simmons University
where she received her bachelor’s degree in nursing. During her senior year she decided
to continue to become a Nurse Practitioner so she applied to the University of Tennessee
Health Science Center’s dual-concentrated Nurse Practitioner Program.
Dr. Zaya is proud of all her degrees. She has her MC Associate of Applied Science
diploma hanging on her wall right next to her bachelor’s and doctoral degrees. She
never forgets those who helped her along the way.
“I appreciate the adults in my life who invested in me,” explained Dr. Zaya. “They
are the reason I am starting the job of my dreams as nurse practitioner in integrated
medicine in McKinney, Texas. I am extremely grateful to my parents, the faculty and
staff at MC, and all my mentors. All of them are a huge part of my success. I have
important advice for students starting their journey: rely on people who show interest
in you and want to help you succeed like the folks at MC. One day you will look back
and say, ‘Wow, what would I have done without them?’”