Once upon a time as a little girl, Dr. Christy Granberry Barrick (2005) rode her bicycle on the Raymond Campus. She wasn’t exactly born on the grounds, but Hinds Community College was in her blood from the beginning.
She said, laughing, “I grew up knowing I was going to go to Hinds. When my classmates dreamed of going on to a university, I knew that Hinds was absolutely, 100 percent where I would start my college education. It was not that I had to start at Hinds; I wanted to. I had witnessed what others had accomplished at Hinds and the fun that they had and I wanted to be a part of that.”
She finished her doctorate in nursing practice in 2019 while working and raising two children, Riley, 8, and Cooper, 5, with husband Dustin, a coach at Germantown High School. Now at age 35, she is an acute care nurse practitioner at the University of Mississippi Medical Center where she manages critically ill trauma and surgery patients at the state’s only level 1 trauma center. The family is also very involved in Broadmoor Baptist Church.
She has accomplished a great deal in her career but perhaps the most outstanding is that she has authored and implemented a new protocol at UMMC that has changed certain aspects of care for ICU patients. This work has led to her being the primary author for three publications, and she was asked to present at a national conference this year.
For her educational and career accomplishments, Barrick is the recipient of Hinds Community College’s inaugural Young Alumnus of the Year Award.
Her work ethic won’t be a surprise to anyone who knows her mother, Hinds Community College Foundation Executive Director Jackie Granberry.
Yes, for Barrick, Hinds is literally family but she saw the college in a whole different light when she came first as a student and then later as a summer employee.
“Hinds has always been a family to me and the people that I met at Hinds are lifelong friends. I feel like I got the foundation I needed to be successful in college, but I also learned much more,” she said. “I had some of the best instructors that I have had in my educational journey. They cared about me and encouraged me — Beverly Fatherree, Sharon Feaster, Jason Webb and Coach Terri Black.”
Another person was recruiting coordinator Reggie Harris, with whom she worked in Hinds Connection from 2003-2005.
“I had known Reggie my entire life, but I got to work with him as a student and got to know him when I came back and worked a summer as a recruiter here,” she said.
Hinds alumnus Belinda Allen, wife of Itawamba Community College President Dr. Jay Allen, nominated Barrick for the award because “she has accomplished a great deal in her years. However, I nominated her also because of her deep love and appreciation for Hinds Community College,” Allen said.
At Hinds, Barrick was a two-year starter on the softball team and was involved in Phi Theta Kappa and the Baptist Student Union. But she is emphatic that the highlight of her Hinds experience was Hinds Connection, the college’s student public relations and recruiting group that is highly visible at college events.
“I learned a lot of leadership skills in Hinds Connection,” she said. “Through Hinds Connection, I was able to meet a lot of people and be involved in a leadership role. That has really helped me throughout my education and now throughout my career. I even learned the correct way to serve food, and I find myself watching waiters in restaurants to see if they do it right.”
She believes that if she had not felt called to study medicine, she could have easily been a Hinds recruiter.
“I fell in love with the recruiting office. I loved every part of that,” she said. “I loved helping other people see the value in starting at Hinds. I see a whole lot of people who undervalue the community college experience. I could share my personal experiences with them.
“Being able to get involved and be a part of the campus is just something I’ll never forget. I was able to get involved at Delta State University, but it is just different at Hinds. The experience I had at Hinds I have been unable to replicate anywhere else,” she said.
Barrick first became a Hinds student when she dually enrolled as a high school junior. After graduating Magna Cum Laude in 2005, she went on to nursing school at Delta State University, also graduating Magna Cum Laude there in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. She received both her master and doctorate degrees at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in 2014 and 2019.
The values she took with her when she left the college and Hinds Connection have carried her throughout her education and career so far, she said.
“Just learning to work hard and work well with others, working together as a team, and learning to work with people from different backgrounds, different ways of life, different personalities has helped me throughout my career,” Barrick said. “I learned much of that at Hinds.
“I am so incredibly humbled and honored to receive this award. I am not the smartest person or the most accomplished person to ever attend Hinds, but I don’t think you will find many that love it as much as I do.”