On Her Grind Part II

College teaches you how to balance school work, a social life, job(s), organizations and passions. Sometimes, this means late nights and early mornings. The ‘On Her Grind’ Series looks to highlight women on ODU’s campus who work hard balancing these things and make it look flawless!


Meet The Girls

Anika Williams (Pictured right) is a senior majoring in Communications with a double minor in Marketing and Film. She is vice president of ODU’s Success Without Limitations and a member of both Student Activities Council and NAACP. Williams is the founder and CEO of NOISIA, a hat brand sold at our campus store, The Monarch Way, and of Flourished, a skincare business specializing in sugar and coffee-based scrubs, toners, beard oils and more. She is passionate about event planning because it gives her opportunities to connect with local artists and serves on multiple campus event planning committees like Black Legacy. Williams is also the manager of Geist Photography and loves volunteering with youth in her spare time.

Khameshia Francine Outlaw (Pictured Left) is a senior majoring in Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations. She is a member of The King’s Daughters Advisory Council and NAACP and the Business Manager of Old Dominion’s Ebony Impact Gospel Choir. When Outlaw isn’t helping her organizations run smoothly, she works in the university’s Office of Educational Accessibility and as a counselor at the Blocker YMCA of South Hampton Roads.


HC: What steps do you take to balance your school, work, extracurricular activities and social lives?

Anika: It is still and always will be a work in progress, but I cannot live without a simple notepad and pen. I write everything down. I write in a planner, I write whatever I know I have to get done and I write down every idea that comes to my head that I like. It is important for me to remind myself of these things or I’ll forget and they’ll sadly fall into an abyss lost forever. I also use Google Calendar a lot and place every single meeting, class and event on my calendar.

Khameshia: Three words: “Time Management Skills.” I know those three words can either be a confirmation or it could make you confused; trust me, I’ve been on both ends of the spectrums. But it’s the honest truth. One thing you have to remember is: before all the organization stuff, work, social lives and extracurricular activities, you are a student first. I know at times it gets hard to balance it all, but as you go on it gets easier. There are times that I’m at my office job and the office might not busy, so I will try to get some homework done. If I’m at a meeting or an engagement where I can bring my laptop, I’ll try to get some work done as well. Once school work is out of the way, that’s when I can hang out with friends and participate in my extracurricular activities.

HC: What/who motivates you to stay on your grind?

Anika: I often motivate myself, I like to reflect on what I’ve done and then work forward to doing better. But I often try to keep myself around other creatives and leaders (I consider myself both). These people inspire me to be confident in my endeavors and confident in myself. These people make me feel like I can do anything and question why no is an answer.

Khameshia: One person that keeps me grounded in my grind is my mom. She’s a single parent of three. One thing she pushed was getting an education while you’re young, so life won’t creep in and defer you from that path. I can remember when I was still in high school, my mom had gone back to school to receive her bachelor’s degree. It was hard working a full-time job, raising two children at home, one in college and making sure her work was turned in on time. I always tell her if it wasn’t for her laying the foundation for me, I wouldn’t be the woman I am today. My mom tells me all the time that she’s proud of me for being a full-time student while working two jobs and it makes me feel good when I can make the woman in my life that made it all possible happy. That’s what truly keeps me praying to God when I ask for motivation to keep going.

HC: Advice to women younger or new to ODU? (Can be pertaining to any part of college life).

Anika: My advice is to constantly reflect. Think about your goals, what you want to do and often think about how you can accomplish them. Do not forget your goals because you’ll end up lost in yourself. Also get out of your comfort zone, try new things and meet new people. Networking is ESSENTIAL to success, figure out your weaknesses and find people who have those qualities to help you succeed in your endeavors. Get to talking.

Khameshia:  Make sure you have friends that are on the same page as you because that can help you stay on track. When I started my freshman year, the people that I hung out with weren’t bad people, but our goals, views and what we wanted out of life didn’t line up with each other so the friendships didn’t last too. As you go throughout your college experience, you will come into contact with people that will be on the same page as you or you maybe will find people that can inspire you to dream bigger than what you thought you were capable of. I know the people that I have in corner inspires me to reach my academic goals and challenge me to set long-term goals. My friends are always down for a Late-Night Perry Library trip; not only do my friends inspire me academically, but also spiritually I like to think that God was the reason why I was able to connect with them. With that being said, my next piece of advice would be “keep God first and He will make your paths straight”(Proverbs 3:6). Lastly, something that helps me excel academically is when I register for classes I try to sign-in up for classes that are in the time period that I feel the most productive. I know I’m not a morning person, so trying to take an 8 am class isn’t a good idea. I also know that any time after 7 pm is not a good time for me because that’s my downtime. You just have to find out what works best for you and work with it. That is the only way you will be successful in all you do!


Round of applause for these amazing ladies and their dedication to their campus, community and themselves! We aim to continue highlighting ambitious women of Old Dominion University with the ‘On Her Grind’ Series. If you know any other women on their grind, email [email protected], with ‘On Her Grind’ in the subject line, for a feature!