Network, Network, NETWORK!
Transferring to Temple University for the spring 2017 semester I felt a lot of emotions. I was excited for the challenge and new beginning yet anxious like a little kid the night before their first day of school. I was also nervous and a bit scared that I would be out of place. See, I wasn’t the traditional student. I went to college straight out of high school in 2009 but dropped out to enlist in the military. After enlisting, I started school again but due to the constant geographic and work schedule changes that came with my new line of work I was constantly taking breaks from and changing schools. Not to mention that I was also pregnant with my first child so making the decision to go to Temple was one that would require a lot of determination, discipline and dedication.
I could only take online and night classes a few times a week because of my job and my commute was an hour each way! And although I was just a few years older, initially sitting in classes at Temple I felt a bit unconnected with my classmates at times. Because of my military background some of my instructors and classmates thought that I was so cool, experienced and had the upper hand. However in my eyes I felt out of place and far behind. Not only was I completely switching career fields but going into my senior year I had yet to have internship while other kids in my class was working on their 4th and 5th internships. On top of that I was having scheduling and other miscellaneous issues with my command which conflicted me from taking the classes and from fulfilling my internship requirement, all of which I needed to graduate. After much debate and jumping through hoops, I made the tough decision to separate from active duty so that I could fully focus on obtaining my degree. Thinking the hard part was over I was feeling completely liberated! However in the same breath I still felt discouraged, scared and far behind because I had yet to secure an internship, I was juggling being a newly single mom nine hours away from family, I had just quit my job and not to mention it had taken me all of nine years to finally see the light at the end of the tunnel of undergrad.