As the first in my family to attend college in the United States, I felt that I had a responsibility to help achieve my parents’ dreams: obtain a college degree and establish a career. Unfortunately, due to my parents’ divorce when I was younger, my mother became a single mom who had to work two to three jobs to provide for our family. Therefore, the dream of attending college became an unrealistic financial burden.
After high school, I decided to attend Montgomery College (MC) not knowing what my next steps would be. I was fortunate to have met a counselor at MC who taught me about the Universities at Shady Grove (USG) and the transfer process. When I found out that UMBC offered a Psychology program at USG, I immediately started planning the courses that I needed to take in order to graduate with my Associates degree and meet UMBC’s admissions requirements. I transferred to UMBC at USG in fall 2012. During my two years as an undergrad at USG, I was involved in multiple student organizations including the Student Council, UMBC’s Peer Advisory Team, and I became a Student Orientation Leader. I also worked at the Center for Academic Success as a student office assistant, where I continued to work even after I graduated from UMBC in May 2014.
After graduation, I attended Johns Hopkins University to attend their master’s program in counseling. I graduated from the program in May 2016. Though I enjoyed the program, I knew I was destined for something else. Thus, I decided to pursue my current program. I chose the University of Maryland, College Park’s M.Ed. in Human Development program because the courses are offered at USG and the class times compliment my full-time work schedule. I currently work at Towson University at USG; therefore, I can come to class right after work with only a few steps for my commute.
Additionally, because I am both a staff and a student at USG, I have the opportunity of participating in events for professional and personal development as well as give back to the community through committee involvement. Moreover, I enjoy the program because I am learning about strategies of how to effectively work with students of various ages from diverse backgrounds. I plan to graduate in May 2019 and continue to work within higher education. I hope to apply to a doctorate program to earn my PhD degree within the next few years. As for my future career, I would like to become an academic advisor to help students achieve their academic and career goals and be active contributors in our community.