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Winning Essays 2014 > Jackie


Winning Essay: Jackie

Why a Degree? To Reach Milestones... Better Safe than Sorry  

JackieI have several reasons for wanting to graduate from Northwest Vista College before I transfer to a four-year university. The most important in my eyes is to ensure, no matter what obstacles are put in my path, all of the hard work I have completed is not lost. I have learned this hard lesson from my mother. She went to school at San Antonio College and transferred without first getting her associate's degree. Soon after which she fell in love, got married, and adopted my brother, Drew (who is now passed on). She was unaware at the time of adoption that my brother had a condition called Leukodystrophy, which caused her to take a break from school in order to provide him with non-stop care. Before Drew had died, two years after his diagnosis, my mother had given birth to my other brother, Reid. With a dying child and a newborn infant my mother gave up on going back to school and settled for being a full time homemaker and mother.

Come Spring 2010, when I started college classes at Northeast Lakeview College, my mother expressed her desire to return to school. We were both excited to possibly take classes together, but because it had been so long since she was in school her seventy or so credit hours were now invalid and unusable. This meaning that if she wanted to return to school she would have to start all over again. Now, my mother is working two full time jobs so she can barely squeeze by each month. I see how hard she struggles just to survive and it breaks my heart. If only she had gotten an associates degree while she had the chance she could have continued on with her bachelor’s degree once her motherhood situation had settled down. In doing this she could be living the kind of lifestyle she deserves.

I am a new mother of a bouncing baby boy who is now nine months old. It has been a difficult trek to finish my associate's degree but because of the lesson I have learned from my mother I have pushed myself and am now graduating in May. Whether I decide to take a break from formal education to focus on being the best mother I can or if I think I can immediately keep pushing on with my educational goals, I know for a fact that all my hard work will be preserved. I am extremely grateful for the wisdom of my mother so that I have a better chance at finishing my educational dreams of getting a doctorate degree in English literature.