As a mother of three young children, Carmen acknowledged that balancing life as a fulltime student and parenting was challenging. She explained how she managed that important facet of her life. “Parenting young children as a full time student meant we had lots of family discussions
about what I was working to achieve and the positive impact it would have on our lives. I also tried to get as much work done during the week so we could spend quality time together on the weekends.”
Paying for college is another challenge all students face, but for adult students with a family, it means not only paying tuition but supporting their family and maintaining a lifestyle. “I can say it was a challenge; however, I took it one day at a time and remained positive that things would work out,” she added. The personal attention and assistance she received impressed her. “I didn’t expect to have so many people concerned about my college career and helping me overcome obstacles as they arrived. I also never expected to be on a campus where the staff is so friendly and always smile or speak as we pass each other,” she added.
Another less daunting challenge she faced was being in class with traditional age students. “Sometimes I felt like the oldest person in the class,” she laughed. “I looked at the positive; I can help others around me and learn from them as well.”
While she’s faced challenges, she credits one of her favorite professors, Dr. Noam Shpancer, for inspiring her to look for the good in every situation. “He made the class, Positive Psychology, interesting with his sense of humor. Overall, the class helped me improve my mental well being and become more optimistic in my thinking process,” she said.
Carmen has managed to work through the challenges and sums up what many other adult students agree with. “Returning to college reinforces that I can accomplish anything if I put my mind to it and that no matter how old I am, learning can always take place,” she said.
She shared her thoughts on taking her next step. “On Sunday May 1, 2016 I received my diploma from Otterbein University. This journey has been one filled with challenges and great times. With the help of the adult transfer office (Mark Moffitt, Mary Mosca and Sharon Anthony) I managed to fulfill the necessary requirements and continue on the path to success. I have moved to Scottsdale, Arizona where I have accepted a second grade teaching position at Creighton School District located, in downtown Phoenix, AZ. Prior to graduating, I was offered several teaching positions including one with Teach for America (TFA).
Although I will miss being at Otterbein, I plan to continue my education by seeking a Masters and my Ph.D. My goal is to work in administration as a principal and fight for equality in the education system. If I could offer advice to any future students looking to transfer, my advice would be, “Visit Otterbein University and get to know the staff! If you are looking for a quality education with a personable environment, small classes, and people who truly care about your success, make Otterbein your new home!”
For more information about education for returning adults, visit www.otterbein.edu/adultandtransfer. Call the Office of Admission at 614.823.1500, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.