Outstanding Southeastern Student Profiles

Sierra Kinnamon


Sierra Kinnamon is a senior elementary education major at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. She is the founder of One Soma Global, a nonprofit organization that provides disaster relief to citizens of Nepal following the country’s devastating 2015 earthquake. Kinnamon’s approach to community service comes as a direct response to the experiences she has had at Southeastern.

“The ability to make connections with my peers and make connections with my professors has developed the skill in me to communicate, which is foundational for this organization,” she said.

The word “soma” in the name of her organization translates to “body,” mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:20, which states, “But now indeed there are many members, yet one body” referring to the body of Christ. Kinnamon’s faith has led her to work for those in need across the world. She went on her first mission trip when she was 12, and has since traveled to Romania, Botswana, Costa Rica, India and eventually Nepal where she has achieved her most significant work.

It was in Nepal where she met Pastor Dawa Lama. She worked closely with his church during a mission trip and helped raise funds for his congregation. Tragically, months after returning home, the earthquake struck. She reached out to the pastor to see what the community needed, and within ten days, Kinnamon and her group were on their way to Nepal to work with the people in the aftermath of the destruction. Her group went to several villages to provide emergency supplies to those in need during the seven days they were there. She was touched by the resilience of the people she met, and their ability to come together and make the best of the situation.

“It was a really awesome experience to see their joy in the midst of such deprivation,” she said.

Kinnamon’s experience in Nepal made her realize the connectedness of people across the world, inspiring the name of her nonprofit. The organization One Soma Global now sponsors projects to assist citizens of Nepal, such as providing temporary shelters and blankets to those who have lost their homes.

Kinnamon wants to eventually work overseas as a teacher, and Southeastern is providing her the training and resources to accomplish this goal. Her success in the classroom is a testament to her work ethic. She maintains a 4.0 grade point average as a member of the Honors Program. She says the close interaction with faculty she has had at Southeastern has helped her visualize her goals and grow as a person. Southeastern has provided Sierra Kinnamon with the skills and resources she needs to succeed beyond the classroom and create real-world positive change in communities abroad.

“I enjoy the relationships I have with my professors and their connections with me,” she said. “Southeastern is a place where I am challenged to think.”