Melissa Plante had a career and was a dedicated single mother, but when Melissa was laid off from her job of 20 years, not having a degree held her back from advancing beyond interviews.
“What was interesting was going on job interviews and them saying, ‘You have all of this experience; if you only had the degree,’” says Melissa. “That was life-changing because, for me, it was kind of like, ‘You know what? I can now start that degree path and accomplish that goal.’”
At a job fair, she clicked with an Ashford University representative who had a similar background. Having researched other schools, she was sure about Ashford but still hesitant about going back to school.
“At first I was petrified of the online courses, but then all of a sudden when you finish that course, when you finish that paper that’s a challenge, at the end of the day that goal has been accomplished.”
And when she wavered, her kids cheered her on and even helped critique her assignments.
“They were the ones that were backing me up going, ‘No, Mom, you need to do this, you’ve been talking about this for years,’” she says.
Melissa worried about balancing her schoolwork with her professional and family responsibilities, but Ashford’s online format helped her fit it all in.
“My children were a little bit older, so I didn’t feel like I was being selfish by getting my degree, but also Ashford allowed me to be able to be a mom and to be able to do online courses so I could work around work and my children’s schedules,” she says.
Her decision also made a difference in the marketplace. “The minute I put Ashford on my resume, the doors opened and people saw that I was trying to further advance my knowledge in addition to my experience,” she says.