The Return of a Long Lost Student
(Continued from 1)
The other feather in my hat is that my return to writing
led me to being a published writer, both online and
print. My cant do attitude has been
replaced with can do, and Ive learned
that if I stumble, I simply pick myself up, brush myself
off, learn from the experience and try again.
As far as feeling awkward in school I have made some
wonderful friends, also re-entry students. The best
gifts I have received from my return to college are
all of the new friendships I have made. I have learned
that the re-entry adults are the ones who are choosing
to be there to better themselves, gaining
knowledge, and advance in their careers. It is impossible
not to bond with others like yourself in the classroom
When education is not being taken for granted, it makes
a difference being surrounded with people who are on
the same level and willing to give support as well as
receive it. I have discovered things about myself and
learned so much that I have brought into the real world
with me. I have also made valuable relationships with
professors and instructors. I now look at the students
just out of high school and see myself ten years ago.
I share my experiences with them and try and give them
all of the support they need, while they in return do
the same for me.
I often encounter people who upon discovering my return
to college have the response, I could never do
that. Following the negative response comes the
excuses I once used, time, money, motivation, and brains.
Recognizing the clichéd excuses, I use my husbands
responses and tell my story of not believing in myself.
It is fun to see the person think about the idea and
see the possibilities of their future coming to mind.
Another excuse I hear from adults who could benefit
from returning to college is the fact that he or she
is computer illiterate. I can speak from experience
in that area as well. When I returned to school, I had
no inkling on how to use a computer. Not having access
to one, I never made it a point to learn. I, too, was
afraid and intimidated.
The wonderful people who work in the computer lab at
the college were my saving grace. No one needs to buy
a computer; most public libraries offer free access
to the computer and, of course, colleges offer computers
for the students. Having access to a computer offers
other benefits. On top of schoolwork, I use the wonderful
world of technology to access scholarship information
and financial aid. There are many different Web sites
that offer information on aid
for college. The information is endless and well
worth the research. One that I recommend for scholarships
FastWeb. I receive updates regarding new scholarships
to apply for by e-mail. The World Wide Web is truly
As I draw closer to my goals, I am thankful to my husband
who convinced me to return, my new friends who have
given me support, and the instructors who have brought
me new knowledge. I hope that others out there give
themselves the same chance I gave myself. Because if
you can dream it you can do it!
Tiffany Young is Community Relations Coordinator
for Literacy Volunteers of America-Brazos Valley, and
resides in College Station, Texas.