Zharia Harris says she’s a leader, not a follower

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By Gabrielle Bunton

Zharia Harris describes her self as independent and a leader. She is setting her mind on the next phase of her life and that is to go to college and to become a business owner

“You learn from your experiences”, she said. “Whatever happens to me in life, I’m going to put it towards how I’m going to do better and do whatever I have to do to not let it happen again.”

She plans to become a business owner of a beauty or nail salon.

“Mainly a beauty shop, because that’s been my main goal in life,” Harris said. “I’ve always wanted to do nails, wax people and somewhat do hair. I want to be able to support myself, my future family, and support other people.”

She graduated from Bryan Station High School in Lexington, Kentucky and is attending Western Kentucky University in the fall. She plans to major in business and minor in journalism, which she hopes will help her with her business goals

“Because I’m not a follower, I’m a leader, I want to lead people to the right direction and give my opinion on things,” she said.

Harris faced judgment and criticism about what she wanted to do with her life. People were worried that it wouldn’t work

“I always try to tell people that I’m going do me regardless.”

She said that her independence stemmed from a job she’s had since she was 16 at White Castle. She was able to do things on her own and work for what she wanted.

She hasn’t traveled much in her life, visiting only Ohio. Her mother told her there was more outside of Lexington. She plans to use her business as a way to see more of the U.S. Harris said,

“I plan to expand”, she said. “I plan to start with one small store and see how it goes. If it works out then I’ll expand it to bigger and better things.”

There is always something that becomes an eye opener for people to help see who they really are or what they can be. Harris was shaped to be a leader through years of being the only girl in a family with two brothers, which was hectic at a young age.

“I’ve always wanted to support myself. I’ve always taken care of my little brothers and my mama,” she said. “Any time my mama needed help, I would always help her.”

Harris said she couldn’t always do what they did, because they were boys. Because of this, it made her want to be her own thing all the time.

A quote that she lives by is: Be yourself. While being judged on what she wanted to do later on in her life, being herself was one of the few options she had to show others that she could do what she wanted if she put her mind to it.