I attribute my success to my hard work, my instructors pushing me to the limit, and my family's support.


Mary Thompson-Appiah has spent over 20 years as a licensed childcare provider and currently owns and operates a family childcare facility. "My aspiration is to give early learners the foundation to achieve academic success," she says, "and I love every minute of it."

Mary's educational journey began because she wanted to set an example for her three sons. She earned her Associate of Arts from Prince George's Community College in 2007, and then found Ashford University. "I wanted an accredited online university that would accept most of my previously earned credits and that would challenge me to do my best," she explains. "Ashford met all of my desires."

When she completed her Bachelor's degree, Mary decided she just wasn't ready to be done with school. "I told my family my taste buds were changing. I wanted to pursue a Master's degree." Mary reenrolled, this time pursuing her Master of Arts in Education. Despite health issues, and in addition to owning her own business and nurturing her family relationships, Mary maintained her high GPA in her Master's program. "I attribute my success to my hard work, my instructors pushing me to the limit, and my family's support."

The professional results of her hard work are tangible: the curriculum enabled her to "learn many ways of teaching early learners, and this experience has allowed my business to continue to grow."

In April 2011, Mary, at age 52, and her son, George, at age 28, headed to Clinton, Iowa to attend Ashford's commencement ceremony. Mary paid for her portion of the trip with the Ashford University Commencement Scholarship**. "When I got the call that I had won the scholarship, I screamed, hollered, cried, and praised God, and all of this in the ear of the man on the telephone."

Mary plans to build and improve her childcare facility and convince her other sons, Kofi and Kwame, that they should also pursue their college degrees.

*This program was replaced by the Bachelor of Arts in Education Studies.

**This scholarship is no longer offered.

 Link to George’s story

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