Mothers Living & Learning at College of Saint Mary

Mothers Living & Learning at College of Saint Mary

October 12, 2019 0 By Ronny Jaskolski


I don’t think too many of us could say that the
most important thing we ever learned happened in a classroom. And I think the most important
things we learn are from groups of people that we’re with and how we affect one another. We have anyone from a small town in Nebraska
to Brooklyn…New Jersey… We have someone from Texas here, North Carolina… I feel like the success is guaranteed here.
Because we work as a group, and we don’t really have to explain things because that
understanding is already there and that we definitely need to communicate and don’t
hesitate to speak up and don’t be ashamed of our current standings. I moved away for a year. I had some personal
troubles and then I got back, I mean I never dropped out of school, I just didn’t live
here for a year and… I’m back. I love living here. Pride is one of the major reasons why I wanted
to come here, to prove to Hadlee that you can do anything you want to do. I am not the typical college student, I am
28, I was divorced… This was the program that helped us to succeed as a newly single
mom who didn’t know where I was headed in life. Because these are not just 18-year-olds, they
are not just 21-year-olds. They are mothers and they come with a different layer. Being a mom is just, I never thought I could
do it. I never thought I was going to be a mom. There are a lot of ideas about single moms
that people – you know – they don’t think they can make it. They don’t think
they can succeed. And this program is to help us succeed or help us beat the statistics. It’s hard being a mom, having to be at school
while having two children, like not everybody has the opportunity that we have here, and
if this didn’t exist, I probably couldn’t go to college. I still need to be a mom, and I still have
the responsibilities of being a mom, so I needed to be able to have them in a safe location
and a community that supports us and helps us. I came in flat broke, so because lawyers cost
money and doctors cost money and I’d just been through a divorce and had a child, so,
you know, it’s tough when you first get here. I was pretty excited that I got scholarships,
not only as a mother, but as a student, and you get a lot of support. And there’s a
lot of things that just come together as you come. So you kind of show up in faith, not
knowing exactly how everything’s going to work out but everything does. There is no way that I could be at this school
without the financial aid help. It’s not just school and it’s not just daycare,
it’s life! This is our life right now, in this moment. I have higher dreams and hopes for myself
than I have ever had. I love helping people. I just started my OT
classes actually and I am pretty excited about this year. I’m going to be an occupational therapist,
so I’m really excited about it and I really think that it’s the career that I was meant to
do from the beginning. I have my dreams, I have my goals and my dreams
and I just chose the hard road, but it’s still a road that I can go down. I like saying “Hi, my name is Tracy and
I’m your nurse assistant today, how can I help you?” I am, I’m starting over… midlife career
change, new direction, completely opposite of what I was doing before. Yes I am going to reach my goals and I actually
believe that now, being here. I do not want to let them down. I want to
succeed and not only do I want to graduate from all classes I want to graduate with understanding
and honors. So as a woman you can do anything and that
you should be proud of who you are. I am capable of doing a lot and I just need
to continue to walk tall. I was told the history of the nuns and how
they would walk out to the people. And usually nuns were cloistered, they were behind gates
and people came to them for help. And these women went through those gates and out into
the world and helped the people in society and I think we are all called to do that.
I think women who want a higher education want it because we want to go out into the
world and prove something.