Tuesday, November 25, 2003
Woman to Woman: Going Back To School
In tonight's Woman To Woman report, a goal a lot of us long to accomplish...going back to school. Whether it's getting a second degree, finishing your G-E-D, or getting a bachelor's -- returning to campus can be a lesson in hard knocks. Tonight, the inspiring stories of two women who hit the books a second time around, and how you can too.
(WSVN) -- It's been more than 30 years since Patricia Haselmann stepped onto a college campus.
Patricia says, "After the first year I dropped out because I got a job tending bar making lots of money and I didn't think I needed college."
More than ten years since Beatriz Vinson took a mid-term.
Beatriz says, "It took me this long to figure out what I wanted to do with my life."
Both are now full time students at F-I-U, and among the growing number of women going back to college.
Beatriz says, "I preach to my kids all the time that they need to go to school, and how could I be somewhat of a hypocrite and say go to school, go to school, but mom never did it."
Many of the women who go back to school are mothers, some juggling a full-time job, marriage, and other responsibilities.
But college administrators say if you really want to go back to school, there are a number of resources, some right on campus.
FIU College of Education DeanLinda Blanton says, "There are often childcare centers or other kinds of supports on campus."
F-I-U has its' own childcare center, which even lowers monthly tuition for full-time students.
Or you could also ask a fellow student you trust to baby-sit.
DeanBlanton says, "You've got a student population often who would like some extra work but not a fulltime job."
"Okay what do you need help in?"
Beatriz is married with three sons.
When she's not shuttling them to and from school or helping them with their homework, someone else in her family is.
She says, "I have help from my mother-in-law, my parents. They're wonderful, without them I couldn't do it."
Patricia says you'll also need financial and moral support.
She says, "My sister's a math teacher and I would be calling her every night crying...She'd calm me down and explain to me how to do the problems and I'd be ready for another day."
And finally, if you're going back to school, plan, plan and plan.
Beatriz says, "I have times for everything. It's scheduled and I follow that schedule because otherwise it becomes chaotic."
Patricia and Beatriz can't wait for graduation day... They both hope to become teachers in the very near future.
Patricia says, "I always said that if I had a really good teacher somewhere along the way I would have continued on, so I'm hoping that I can be that really good teacher."
Beatriz says, "I want to finish. I can't wait till I'm holding that degree. That little diploma, that's, that's worth everything to me right now."
One last note, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, employees with a college degree earn 81% more than those without one -- now that's an incentive.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Florida International University