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Meet Erial Smith of Erial’s College Mission Inc. in Oak Cliff

Today we’d like to introduce you to Erial Smith.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I’m from Dallas, TX currently a junior attending Lamar University majoring in Nursing with a minor in Health and Sociology. I started the nonprofit organization as a sophomore in college, I wanted something at the time to take up my time and be beneficial within the community in Dallas. I saw a peer close to me struggling financially between textbooks and buying toiletries. So, I talked with close family members about starting an organization and I wanted to help college students since it hits home with me. It was something personal, so I came up with the name Erial’s College Mission. It made me ecstatic, within a week of starting the organization, I was in the Dallas ISD district speaking to high school students about the opportunity. I had my first set up in the library with an iPad and flyers to let the scholars know. Making it be one of my proudest moments yet. When August of 2017 came, I had my first donation drive, “Erial’s College Mission Donation Drive”.

A year later, I did a school tour in the Dallas ISD area, calling it Erial’s College Mission School Tour. That increased more students coming to the next donation drive I had in August of 2018. I’ve donated to over 75 students and organizations supplying them with toiletries and school supplies in a bucket. I’ve also reached sickle cell students, donating school supplies to educators, house fire victims, women’s shelters, radio interviews, expos to give exposure to the nonprofit. We’ve also had fundraisers raising hundreds of dollars to allow me to be successful in what I believe in. Now, we are getting ready to expand in the Beaumont/Houston area to help the students within this community. I pride myself in this organization because just two years ago, it was just a thought and it has now flourished to becoming an incorporated organization (Erial’s College Mission Inc.), a name that i hope comes up in everyday conversation.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It has not been a smooth road, some struggles have been getting into certain school districts. Letting adults know I am serious about helping others.

Please tell us about Erial’s College Mission Inc.
I donate to high school students going to college by giving them a bucket full of supplies such as toiletries and school supplies. I specialize in helping with the financial gap between high school and college.

I am known for the name, my first name is Erial and local people walk up to me and say “aren’t you the twin with the nonprofit?”, and it makes me light up.

I am most proud of the growth from where I started to where I am now, not all the way where I want to be but there’s progress. I hope to be the next Red Cross, a nonprofit organization that everyone knows about. The organization just partnered with Beaumont ISD and Grand Prairie ISD.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
If I had to start over, I wouldn’t change anything. I started within me, with the desire to help others. My progression has helped me evolve into the woman I want to be. And to know this is apart of my calling.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
This image shows me holding up a ECM boarder ready to take photos with the students right before pep rally hosted by South Oak Cliff High School

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