Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, 2009
Psychology Website Writer and Advisor
"It's never too late to achieve a goal!"
At age 60, Gloria Anderson is living proof that it's never too late to follow your dreams. Currently enrolled in the Bachelor's program for Psychology, Anderson is hooked on learning and eager to continue. "When I am finished with my bachelor's degree, and if time and health allow, I plan to continue my studies. I would like to do something helpful for others in the future, and in order to be knowledgeable when guidance is needed, I want to have gained the expertise and confidence necessary."
When Anderson graduated from high school in Oxford, Pennsylvania in 1964 ("high school was a long time ago!"), she had no plans beyond the noble career of homemaking and parenting. She married after high school and began raising a family the next year. After forty-three years of marriage, she and her husband have two sons, a daughter and six grandchildren. Anderson has worked as a secretary and parish administrative assistant for the past seventeen years, and prior to that, was a school secretary and teacher's aide. "I have enjoyed my work, but have known for many years that the college experience was something I would pursue if I had the opportunity."
In her late 50's, Anderson found online education fit into her lifestyle. After she earned her associate degree in psychology online, she found she had a desire to continue her learning which led her to Ashford University. "It was a 'good fit.' I could continue to work, I could study at home, and I would have a degree with value when I was finished. As I learned more about the school, it became clear to me that it had a long and honorable reputation, and that I would feel at home. Tamara Caolie and the other advisors I spoke with made sure I was clear about my options and that I felt confident about my choices. Ashford also accepted some of the credits I had earned from my previous school, and that was the deciding factor as far as I was concerned."
Anderson is enjoying the coursework so far and is fascinated with psychology. "I have always wanted to learn what 'makes people tick.' Of course, there are some challenges. I like to take my time with my studies and put forth my best effort. It takes discipline to study at home and maintain a steady pace, but I am absolutely thrilled to be able to have the opportunity to do what I did not do when I was much younger. I have to remember to take a break now and then so that I get other things done, but the course work is so appealing that I sometimes lose track of the time."
Even with her vast life experience, Anderson is pleased to note that her life has changed significantly since enrolling at Ashford. "I have a sense of getting caught up on what I missed earlier in my life. Although I have always loved being a wife, parent, and grandparent, I am also greatly enjoying my experience as a student. The insight I gained through just my first class helped me understand my own life more clearly." Plus she notes, "The dedication of staff members, faculty, and the friendships developed in such a short time have been a welcome surprise. My first instructor was great!! He really cared about the students and we all felt supported by his concern and individual attention."
Anderson is proud to be an Ashford student and feels that there can be no better influence on children than to see a parent or grandparent enjoying education. "I hope to set a good example for them as they mature and begin planning for their future. I also want to impress upon them, the fact that it's never too late to achieve a goal!"
In April 2009, Gloria achieved her goal: She graduated with her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Since then, she has earned two additional degrees and is currently studying the French language. “My personal life has also gotten busier, and that is a good thing at the age of 64. My ‘brain age’ is only 42 according to recent testing - I believe that getting my college education later in life was good for me in this respect.”
Gloria has also switched careers since earning her degree - she now serves on the Editorial Advisory Board for Helium.com. “I am using my degree by writing and editing psychology-related articles. I also advise other writers on the importance of properly researching, writing, and citing references for scientific and medical articles.” Congratulations on your success, Gloria!