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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

It’s Never too Late

April 1, 2013

Rebecca PriceRebecca Price did not make it to college after she graduated from high school in 1990. The birth of her son, Brody, changed the course of her life and college was pushed to the back as she focused on her role as a single mom. “Having a baby was not the right time for me to think about college,” says Rebecca.

However, her “baby” was getting married soon and Rebecca was about to be 40, “so now was the time for me to do it,” she says of her computer search for online education opportunities. Rebecca found SJVC’s online Clinical and Administrative Medical Assisting program and enrolled in April of 2012. Online classes allow her to continue working full-time as a Home Health Care Aid, while she cares for her 9-year old daughter, Alivia, and her disabled father, Joe, who has many serious health care issues.

Rebecca was a little nervous about going back to school after such a long absence. Her greatest struggle was with her algebra class, which she took twice. “The second time around it just clicked,” she says. Her Student Advisor, Josh Mishou, was there to support her through her bleakest moments. “I felt like I had a cheerleader at my side the whole way,” says Rebecca, who ended up with a solid B. “I get a lot of positive reinforcement from all my teachers – and seeing those A’s is just phenomenal,” she says.

She also has a lot of support at home. “Alivia is very mature for her age and takes on a lot of responsibility,” says Rebecca. “If I ask her to do something, she’s on it.” Joe also gives a lot of encouragement to Rebecca and is quick to tell relatives how she is doing. Rebecca’s 3.8 GPA gives him a little something to talk about, and Rebecca feels his pride.

Even with all of Rebecca’s responsibilities at home, work and school, she was determined to finish what she started.  “My sense of accomplishment is a reward in itself,” she says. “If I can’t do well at something, I’d rather just not do it.” All that effort and reward are not lost on Alivia, who just started public school this year after years of home-schooling. “Just like me, she was nervous at first,” says Rebecca. “But she’s doing really well and loving it.” It is important to Rebecca to give her daughter a positive role model and show her the importance of finishing what you start.

Rebecca plans to use her CAMA education and training to work in a holistic medical environment. Her interest is spurred by Brody’s autism, which has benefitted significantly from holistic therapies. Rebecca may continue her education to become a Registered Nurse or Physician Assistant. She knows that anything is possible – no matter how late your start in higher education.

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