I graduated high school in June of 1992. I had big dreams I wanted to be the first college graduate in my family. I was the first to go to college I was also the first to leave college.
See I started school and immediately got in over my head. Twenty years ago the the only time I ever talked to anyone about my college path was to talk to a financial aid counselor about being declared an independent student because I had no parent or guardian living, that I knew about at the time.
See back then I choose a degree field that I thought I wanted, there was no advisement. I ran to the arms of the local community college with not a single clue. I wasn’t ready for the commitment, the homework or anything remotely college related. I had no one to lean on, no support system that understood what I was jumping into. I was 19 and I was clueless.
I spent several semesters at the local community college in two different degree fields. I was so sure that I wanted to become a lawyer that I started the paralegal studies program. Mock Trial never prepared me for the classes I was taking. After a few semesters I met some people from a private college that told me all about campus life and how wonderful it was. I was hooked. So I applied got accepted and dove head first into a four year program. This time I only had 3 different majors. One of those majors was teaching. Something I had thought about doing other than being a lawyer.
Boy was I in over my head yet again. See in all of this I didn’t take into consideration my personal history.
See the February of 1993 I lost my mother to cancer. I felt all alone surrounded by well meaning family. I was also a people pleaser so I did what I thought I was suppose to do. Not once in the entire two years of my college experience did I have a clue as to what I really wanted to do with my life.
Truth be told it has taken me twenty years to know what I want to be when I grow up.
I think often of my 7th grade history teacher. He was inspiring. We got to choose to write a research paper or do a project. I always picked the project.
It was in his class that I learned to program in Basic. It was in his class that I learned that I had more potential then I ever dreamed. It was in that history class that I learned to love history.
In the last twenty years I have learned many things. Of all the things I learned it was a silly Facebook game that ignited a fire in my. I’m sure you probably saw the game or even played it. If you commented on someone’s status they would give you a number and you were suppose to share that number of things that your friends probably didn’t know about you. I got the number seven.
As I was creating my list of all the things one of those seven was the regret that I never got my degree. My sister in law commented that it wasn’t too late that I could go back to school and get a degree. Pondering exactly that I pulled out our tax forms from last year and filled out a FAFSA to see if I qualified for any financial aid at all. While I was waiting to see if I would get any aid another friend posted about getting a scholarship to the only NCATE ( National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education) accredited online university. It peaked my interest and I took a look at the school and the programs they offered. I asked for more information and then paid the application fee and started the process not ever really expecting to get in.
So what did I decide to be when I grow up? I want to teach. I want to teach history. I want to teach history to 7th and 8th grade students.
Just a week or so later my application has been accepted, my financial aid is in place and poof I am a college student again. My husband and I had talked about me going back to school after he graduated. The day he graduated I got my acceptance letter to Western Governors University .
I never expected to get any financial aid.
I never expected any prior credits to transfer, but I am so happy that 19 of them did.
I never expected to be 40 years old and back in school and ready and focused and determined to succeed and graduate on time if not early.
It just goes to show you that when you decide to do something and it is the right path you are suppose to be one all the doors will open for you.
So what is one regret that you can fix? I shared mine how about sharing yours?