I had been away from college for almost ten years, and fear controlled my performance during the first semester.Â It took some time, but I gradually began to feel comfortable around my professors and classmates who were a lot younger and energetic.Â Something that I appreciated was the fact that my classmates and instructors never made me feel as though I did not belong in a classroom.Â The â€œconstructive actionâ€ was completely foreign to me and it was not until the third semester that I actually understood its purpose.Â For most students, the idea of “constructive action” develops during the course of their studies.Â For a graduate student who has never attended MCNY, it was very difficult for me to grasp the notion of what it means to write a research paper.Â We never saw a completed project until half way during the second semester.Â The concept had completely assimilated during the third semester, and the “constructive action” finally took form.
I began to utilize the concepts learned in the classroom and eventually was able to apply them to my every day experiences as well as integrate them to other academic areas. Also, and most importantly, I am now able to guide students who come to the LEC requesting assistance, expressing how hard it is and talking about giving up.
Overall, college became a part of my life and if I was told to do it all over, I would undoubtedly walk those corridors again.Â I would ride those elevators up and down holding my books and reading my assignments on my way to class.Â I can count the countless sleepless nights I had, with my 86 year-old mother recently out of the hospital after a stroke.Â I kept saying to my co-workers at the LEC that I could not continue and they kept encouraging me.Â Every night when I went home, my daughter kept telling me “you are not a quitter.”Â I finally graduated and when I did, my daughter gave me a magnet which reads: “Never, never, never give up.” (Winston Churchill) â€“and I never did, and never will.
Sandra Ariza completed her M.P.A. in general administration in August 2009. She works in the Learning Enhancement Center.Share