John Draper Witherspoon, was a student at Tulane University medical school. Betty Witherspoon earned five degrees in total, including a Ph. D in pediatric nursing. She became a professor of nursing  at Vanderbilt University. She said that it gave her "a sense of family and tradition" and taught her about "being conscientious about people's feelings, being polite, being responsible and never taking for granted what you have in your life".