U = University

It never dawned on me as a child that I would attend a university. I came from a family of farmers and blue collar workers. In my childhood home academics were not stressed and the future was something that simply happened…it wasn’t planned for.

Around my junior year in high school colleges began hinting that I might want to play for their school. It was not for my academic ability but for my athletic ability. I had been playing competitive volleyball on a travel team since I was a Freshman.
My Senior year a local newspaper reporter was interviewing me about our undefeated season. Suddenly he asked me where I planned to attend college. I had no idea what to say. I loved the idea of going to college but my grades were extremely average and I had little motivation to actually study.

By the end of my senior year in high school I had been offered a full ride scholarship to play volleyball for a division II school (Wright State University). I made it through about a year and a half of school….lettered in volleyball my freshman year but failed many classes. I quickly realized I was woefully unprepared for college and dropped out.

It took me quite a few years to realize how important a degree from the university would be in my chosen field. I began taking classes at the local junior college as I could afford them. And slowly began learning how to study and I learned to love learning. After (many) years of piece-mealing together classes I finally completed my Associates Degree.

Finishing my Bachelor’s Degree (University of Texas at Arlington) would be too expensive and I would never finish if I  tried  to pay for it on my salary….so I took out student loans and by the time I turned 48 I graduated with a Bachelors of Social Work….Oh, and did I mention I graduated with honors?!

Me and Mom

Me and Mom

14 thoughts on “U = University

  1. Mabel Kwong

    So proud of you Tree to have graduated colleague after all these years. Congratulations and you and your mum look very happy in that photo. We all have different learning capacities and we all learn at our own pace. Some of us might be slower than others, but the most important thing is not to give up. Which is what you did and that is very inspirational indeed 🙂

  2. Bec

    Well done for graduating in something you love. And double well done for studying part time – that takes alot of perseverance 🙂 you and your mum look so happy. It must have been a wonderful day 🙂

  3. joannesisco

    That is an amazing accomplishment. Going back to school part-time while working full time is very difficult and challenging. I have a deep respect for the effort required to do it …. and get honours 🙂
    When you were ready, you made it happen! How wonderful is that?!!

  4. Su Leslie

    Congratulations; not only for your academic achievement, but for your perseverance and dedication to completing your degree while doing so many other things at the same time. Well done!


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