Wednesday, July 25, 2018
Tekeydra Lee was in California, "living her best life," she says, when she got a phone call from her father, Tim C. Lee, who is an alumnus of Jackson State University.
"He called me, and he was like, 'What are you doing for school?'" she says.
At the time, Lee had decided to take a year off before going to college. "He was like, 'No, you're not. I got you a flight booked. You're already enrolled in Jackson State. Classes start on Monday,'" she says.
The Boyce, La., native moved with her sister, Jhavmon Lee, to Jackson in 2011 to attend JSU, and says it turned out to be the best decision.
"I'm grateful for that because I went to a predominantly white elementary, junior high, high school," she says. "I went to the same school K-12. Jackson State, it's an HBCU (historically black college or university), so I got to experience my own culture. Jackson State is like home."
Lee graduated from JSU in 2015 with a bachelor's degree in biology, and she recently got accepted into Jackson State's graduate biology program in preparation for medical school. In the future, she plans on becoming a pediatric oncologist.
Though Lee has plans to go into the medical field, entrepreneurship is also important to her, something her father instilled in her at a young age.
In 2017, she became the youngest owner of a TCL Financial & Tax Services at age 24.
"My dad, he has always taught us about being financially independent. Because he had his own tax office, it just automatically made me want to learn, and from me learning, I actually just enjoyed doing (it)," she says.
"It's something that I love doing. As well as, it's another source of income. It's keeping my father's legacy alive. It's something I can pass down to my kids."
She began working for the company, of which her father owns and is the chief executive officer, in 2011 and moved her way up from receptionist to tax advisor and officer manager, and eventually, she became an owner.
"(I'm) following in my dad's footsteps," she says.
In her free time, she likes to help with volunteer events for Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., spend time with family and go to the movies. She also loves to go bowling.
"I don't think people like bowling with me because I'm too competitive," she jokes.