As a longtime athlete, Anyla Shipman was originally drawn to the University of Montevallo to join the women’s track and field team. Her passion for sports — she has played volleyball, softball, soccer, basketball and track and field over the years — led her to major in exercise and nutrition science. The Birmingham resident, who has just started her senior year, is looking to continue her education after graduating and pursue a career in physical therapy.
“I’ve played sports all my life and I enjoy staying active, but I want to do something where I can help people as well,” she said.
Shipman has earned multiple scholarships, including the Percy B. Gill Memorial Scholarship, a track and field scholarship, a MADE scholarship and a STEM scholarship. While receiving these has reassured Shipman that she is covered financially, she has found that they have also eased some of the mental pressure that she and other college students face.
“When you receive a scholarship, it relieves some of that stress of worrying about college because college is very expensive,” she said. “Scholarships also show that your hard work is actually going somewhere. It lets you know to keep going and to continue doing what you’re doing, and that God’s got it handled.”
On campus, Shipman is president of the National Society of Leadership and Success, a MADE ambassador, a Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) ambassador, a TRIO McNair scholar, a member of Black Student Union and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. When she started at UM, her plan was to attend for two years and then transfer, but she found at the end of her sophomore year that Montevallo had become a special place to her.
“I enjoy the sense of community that’s here, and the people and the professors,” she said. “I fell in love with my team and the community that my team has built. That’s when I knew I belonged at Montevallo and decided to stay here and finish it out. And I’ve enjoyed my time here.”