She survived cancer. Now comes the hard part: Returning to school.

Brianna Smith, a Cass Tech senior, is an AP/IB student who recently survived cancer. She was diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and that didn’t stop her from being a scholar.

She found out about her sickness in the middle of her junior year. Her cancer diagnosis caused her to miss half of a semester of school that year; but she kept going. Because she was to finish high school, she stayed on top of her work even while being treated for cancer. It was a long journey for Smith, but healing was on the way.

Smith found out that her treatment plan was a success and that she beat cancer. While she was happy to beat her diagnosis, she was nervous about returning to school.

She didn’t imagine that it would be cordial environment for her especially during her dramatic changes like the loss of her hair and some loss of memory. Yet, none of this stopped her from finishing off high school and Brianna stayed confident in herself no matter what happened.

“My cancer has helped me find a new appreciation for people because you never know what someone is going through. It taught me to be humbler, not that I wasn't humble before, I just don’t judge anyone because I don’t know what day they had before I said hello to them,” Smith said.

Her cancer journey was clearly a blessing in disguise because she said it taught her how to care more. She is continuing to be successful in her life just like she was before she was diagnosed.

Smith said she lives her life now by joining new programs like starting a women’s empowerment/support platform that encourages young women to take pride in motivating and complimenting each other. Additionally, she is involved in poetry club, National Honors Society, and Cyber Patriots; a cyber security program.