Moms Like Us Spotlight: Arianna

Life rarely turns out the way we expect, and the real gritty stuff usually happens at the worst times. Yet, there are people like our newest “Mom Like Us” who persevere through challenges and difficulties. Today’s mom is a personal friend/colleague that I met through my work with Pearson Students. I know that her story and her positive attitude will inspire you!

Name: AriannaFam052014

Age: 23

Number of Children: 1

Marital Status: Divorced

College: Junior at Eastern Washington University/already have 2 associates degrees

Dream Job/ Career Goals (Or current career if you are finished with college):

I wish I knew =] definitely hope to work with Pearson-very passionate about education!

Why did you decide to go (back) to school?

To be able to provide a stable future for my son.

What is your biggest fear in terms of college?

Missing out on time with my son or my grade taking a hit due to being spread too thin.

Do you associate with students who aren’t mothers? If so, how do you feel around them?

Not usually, only because when people slack off and say they don’t have time for something I tend to roll my eyes a little only because being a mother is a 24 hr job that never ends, but I make time for priorities. This is a fault I am trying to work on because not everyone can handle different stresses and schedules.

What inspires/motivates you?

The thought and vision of a stress free future for my family and one day not being so endlessly busy

Tell me a little bit of your story:

Like so many college students today, I’ve experienced some frustrations, setbacks and obstacles. I am a divorced single mother to a preschooler, Jayden, and I know first-hand how easily bumps in the road can turn into mountains. Unforeseen, difficult to trek, mountains. I married young. I didn’t forsee such a short marriage and I soon found myself without a job, without a college degree and raising an 18 month old toddler, alone. Los Angeles was too expensive, so I moved to Washington State. I knew then that if my son was to grow up in the world I had dreamed for him, I had to find a way to go to college. I knew both of our futures depended on it.

The decision to enroll in college was scary for me! I was already working full-time. School and studying would mean even less time with my son. But I knew deep down it was the right choice. So I enrolled. Then, just a few weeks before classes started, I came home to an inch of standing water throughout my apartment — all of my furniture completely ruined. And I quickly learned that renters insurance doesn’t cover flood damage.So I had yet another tough choice: replace my furniture or pay for school.

I paid for school.me&Jay

The Associate degree program I selected was paralegal studies. I thought two years was all I could handle. But once I started, I fell in love with learning! My GPA soared. I joined Phi Theta Kappa (the community college national honor society) and soon became our chapter’s President! I was succeeding and it felt great. I was so encouraged that I decided to pursue my Bachelor’s degree. Soon after that decision, while still in community college, I was laid off again. But I had come too far to give up. I searched for and found an internship that eventually led to a job in the legal field. I was also blessed with several scholarships that changed everything for me. To meet my goal of transferring to Eastern Washington University last fall, I had to take 25 credits for three consecutive quarters while working and raising Jayden. My counselor and even my friends thought it couldn’t be done.

I’m pleased to report that it can be done. I graduated, with honors, with a paralegal studies and general transfer associate degree in 2014. Today I’m a Junior at Eastern Washington University studying International Business and Finance. I’m going to graduate in 2016. Then, I might even apply for the MBA program.

Arianna, delivering a message to over 1,000 Pearson employees, representing all of us like a rockstar! (Photo cred: Patrice L. Jones)

Arianna, delivering a message to over 1,000 Pearson employees, representing all of us like a rockstar! (Photo cred: Patrice L. Jones)

Favorite inspirational quote?

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”

-Helen Keller

Any advice for other mothers thinking about going or returning to college?

 Stay strong. Be determined. Don’t give up. Always look at the big picture because THAT is what benefits you as a person AND you as a mother.

Thank you so much Arianna for sharing your story with all of us! You are such an amazing mom, student, and person in general! I know that more great things are ahead for you! Congratulations on your success thus far!

If you would like to be a “Mom Like Us” please send me a message through the “Ask Dianna” button at the top of the blog!

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