Dr. Andrea Louise Jenkins was born in Midland, Michigan. She was baptized at and was a member of Metropolitan Memorial Baptist Church, Ypsilanti, Michigan.
Andrea “Drea” excelled in school; she attended Chestnut Hill Elementary, Northeast Middle and Midland High School. Andrea enjoyed singing, as well as playing the violin, harp, and piano. Andrea was a voracious reader & writer. She had an article published in the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series. Her favorite books included Science Fiction, Fantasy & everything DC & Marvel Comic related. As a writer, she was an active member of the Fan Fiction community. Historical fiction and sci-fi movies and TV shows were among her favorites to watch and discuss with family and friends.
She matriculated from Midland High School in 2001 where she was a National Merit Scholar. She attended the University of Michigan and graduated from the Honors College with a triple major in Linguistics, Cultural Studies, and Anthropology. She formed lifelong friendships while living at the Telluride House. Andrea was a Fulbright Scholar and chose to study at the University of Toronto for her Master’s Degree and her Thesis published in 2008 was “ An Exploratory Comparative Study of Indigenous Postsecondary Institutions in the U.S. and Canada". Andrea chose to pursue her PhD in Anthropology at the University of Chicago. Her research site was the Title VII Bay City, Mi Public Schools Indian Educational Program. In May of 2016, Andrea successfully completed her defense of her dissertation: “Economics of Urban American Indian Belonging: Cultivating Academic and Cultural Strength Through Title VII Programs”, which was published in August 2016, the month of her graduation and receipt of her PhD.
Andrea traveled extensively; she enjoyed being immersed in other cultures. Her trips included: Europe, Asia, South America, Africa, Central America and Australia. She considered Toronto and Chicago her second homes.
Andrea was a philanthropist at heart; she contributed to and supported numerous charities and organizations. She believed that “We are called to Bless”, and her life reminds us that “ We are not merely containers, not merely storage units for God. We are living conduits, supercharged by his power, grace, blessings and love, so that we can hold out our hands to the world—in all the diverse ways of blessing that we were made for—just as He held His hands out for, over, under and around us".
Andrea was preceded in death by her Fraternal and Maternal Grandparents. Left to mourn her passing are her Parents Anita Louise Horne Jenkins and James R Jenkins, her Brother James R Jenkins II (Leslie), a Nephew James R Jenkins III, a Niece Phoebe Louise Elaine Jenkins, Godparents Darryl Tolbert and Barbara Johnson, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and a host of other relatives, friends and colleagues.
Funeral services for Dr. Andrea Louise Jenkins will take place at 11:00 A.M. on Saturday April 22, 2017, at the Ware-Smith Woolever Funeral Home, 1200 W. Wheeler St., Midland, Michigan, with Rev. Billy Strawter officiating. Burial will take place in the Midland City Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Saturday from 10:30 A.M. until time of service.
Memorials for Dr. Andrea Louise Jenkins may be sent to the Midland Emergency Food Pantry Network, P.O. Box 2521, Midland, MI 48641-2521.
The family appreciates the many kind expressions of love and concern extended during this time of bereavement. We thank you for your visits, your calls, the food, your countless acts of kindness, the beautiful floral arrangements, and the abundance of prayer. May God richly bless each and every one of you.