I guess I should start by introducing myself. My name is Renee and I am an ACE student at Urbana University. I am the mother of 5 children and I have just become a grandma! I have so many things in my personal life that I am proud of and very thankful for. The one thing that I am not proud of was starting college and not finishing. Now that most of my children are grown and on their own, or in college themselves, I decided it was time for me to conquer this one thing I have been harboring as a disappointment.

My journey begins last fall when I was looking for a new job. I was working part time, but wanted something full time. In searching for something I felt was within my means, so many places were looking for degrees. I found it difficult to be up against people with degrees when applying for jobs. I want to be able to compete! I have years and years of experience, but sometimes that just wasn’t enough. I decided that in the fall of 2013, I would go back to college. I figured that would give me enough time to get everything together and get accepted.

I contacted my high school by e-mail and they sent my transcripts that day. Wow! That was fast and easy. I went online to the previous colleges I had attended, there were two, and paid for those to be sent. Within a week, both of those had been received by UU. I filled out my application and was accepted within a couple of days. It was that easy!! I was done so quickly, I had enough time to meet with an adviser and schedule for 2013 Spring Semester. I didn’t even have to wait for Fall! I am starting two semesters earlier than I had planned!

During the Christmas holidays, I got more and more anxious about starting classes. One of my evening classes was cancelled, but I got into a traditional class during the day. It was really nice to have that option. It really opens up getting your classes you need without having to wait. When the week before classes start came, I was petrified! I figured I would be the oldest person in my class….what would that be like!? Would I be able to comprehend anything? Would I make a fool of myself in front of all those kids? The questions just kept whirling around in my brain!!

The first week of classes…..have been AWESOME!! So far, I am getting adjusted to going to class and yes, I am the oldest person in my classes. So far, everyone has been very nice and helpful. I have not been laughed at by the younger students, they are very congenial and the teachers have been wonderful to everyone in the classes. I am really starting to look forward to going to my classes and learning everything I can. It has raised my self-esteem and made me more confident in my work.

I will be blogging more later, so come back and check how things are going. I hope that I encourage someone into conquering their fear of what would happen if they decided to go back to school. It really isn’t that hard to get started and everyone that I have encountered at UU has been extremely helpful and always have time to sit and discuss whatever it is that you have on your plate. Their goal really seems to be to get you going on your path to success!