In 2012, I lost my job at Danfoss Scroll Technologies located in Arkadelphia AR. At Danfoss, my position was called assembly line operator. I assembled, maintained, and inspected compressors. When I lost my job, I was devastated. I was a single mom with three children. I knew that my unemployment benefits would not be enough to provide for my family. Those benefits were so limited and I had to be actively seeking employment. There were no jobs in Clark County at that time and many had lost their positions with Danfoss at the same time.
I placed my situation in God’s hands. I knew the importance of a good education and my oldest daughter was graduating from Henderson State University and my second daughter was graduating from Arkadelphia High School with plans to attend college as well. I had a three year old son. I had so many depending on me so I asked God to direct my path. I was given a second chance at going back to college to get a degree.
In January of 2013, I enrolled in school at College of the Ouachitas located in Malvern, AR. My good friend and former coworker enrolled at the same time as well. We took the exact same classes so we could study together. I knew it would be tough because I had been out of school 20 years. I qualified for PELL funding and I applied for many scholarships. One such scholarship was the CADC Single Parent Scholarship. I received several scholarships to assist with the cost of my associate’s degree. I received funds and support from the Career Pathways program and the TRIO Student Support Services program. I also was involved in the Student Government Association and Phi Theta Kappa organization.
When I enrolled in college classes, I doubted my ability to make it because I was just an average student in high school. After the first semester at COTO, I had a 4.00 GPA. I was so proud of my achievement and the new relationships that I had made. I became engaged, educated, and empowered at College of the Ouachita. On May 9th, 2015, I graduated with honors from College of the Ouachita in a ceremony at Bank of the Ozarks Arena in Hot Springs, Ar. My three children (along with all my family) were in attendance that day and I felt it was one of the best gifts I could give to them and myself. They were so proud of my accomplishments. I received an Associate Degree in Medical Office Administration with honors. I am continuing my education at Henderson State University to get my Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services. I also received the Community College Transfer Scholarship from Henderson State University where I am enrolled for the 2016 fall semester.
I am proud to say that I am a 2017 college graduate! I graduated from Henderson State University on December 15, 2017. I have my Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services.
My advice to other single parents, “never give up and follow your dreams”.