Colby Nichols overcomes sorrows to become a doctor
By Kennedy Nichols

Posted on May 28, 2023 7:58 PM

Editor’s Note: Colby Nichols is a graduate of Russellville High School and the University of Kentucky and now has earned his doctorate from Belmont University. Along the way, he had to cope with the cancer-related deaths of his mother, Kim Nichols, and his ‘aunt-like’ cousin, Meca Quarles. Soon after his graduation, he proposed to his girlfriend,
Mia Na'Kya Bethea, Iwho said ‘yes.’

The article below is by his loving sister, Kennedy Nichols, who is a student at the University of Kentucky. They are the children of Russellville Middle School baseball coach Tony and the late Kim Nichols.

Colby entered college in August 2016 as a first-generation college kid attending the University of Kentucky. During his undergrad, he faced many trials and tribulations while trying to be the first in his household to obtain a degree. His mother was diagnosed with cancer his freshman year, and eventually passed the first week of his junior year.

Thirteen months after his mom passed, his close cousin, aunt-like figure, Meca Quarles also lost her battle to cancer shortly into his senior year.

Later that year, Colby stayed true to his goal of becoming a graduate and received his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology during the peak of covid, in May 2020. The following Fall semester Colby was accepted into Belmont’s Doctorate of Occupational Therapy program in August 2020.

Colby spent the next three years volunteering at numerous organizations, studying for many exams, and participating in his fieldwork. He did his first Level Two placement at the Medical Center in Franklin, Ky. He spent his second rotation at Advanced Orthopedic and Spine in Mount Juliet, Tenn. He wrapped up his final placement while doing his Capstone Project with FiftyForward and Westminster Home Connection where he was able to perform home modifications.

Since his last placement, Colby has accepted a job as an Occupational Therapist at the Medical Center in Franklin.

Throughout Colby’s college experience. he has exemplified how driven, hardworking, studious, and disciplined he is, as he has never failed to push through struggles but still set the bar high. From a first-generation college student to an educated doctorate degree, Colby has been and will continue to be an inspiration to everyone around him, as he represents the true definition of perseverance.

I know Colby has and will continue to bless and impact so many patients, families, and lives as he enters this career field. From the bottom of my heart, I know Momma is beyond proud, and it’s evident to say Daddy has not stopped beaming with pride and joy.

I am beyond blessed not only to have a brother, but also a best friend, as such a prestigious figure and guide in my life. I will continue to cheer you on and celebrate you and your wins until I have no celebration left in me, Dr. James Colby Nichols, OTD.

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