Deborah White had two-and-a-half years of college and an associate degree in nursing when she decided that she wanted to return to school. She loved her job as a nurse and knew that further education could open more possibilities for her. However, she believed that her work and home responsibilities would prevent her from re-entering the classroom.
After much prayer, Deborah found the solution to her dilemma. In her church, she discovered information on Geneva College′s Degree Completion Program. Because the ADP is a 17-month program with classes meeting only one night a week, Deborah knew that she could manage schoolwork along with her other responsibilities.
"One of [the program′s] main attractions…was the consideration Geneva displayed to its students, knowing that many of the students had jobs and families," she says.
Deborah chose the human services program because it could work as a complement to her nursing degree. She loved her roles of serving her patients and advocating for their needs, and further education would enhance her strengths and develop her ability to care for patients.
While Deborah found the class schedule to be the most beneficial aspect of the structure of the ADP, the classroom atmosphere offered a different kind of accommodation. Surrounded by a Christian community of instructors and classmates, Deborah received more support than she could have imagined. The instructors prayed for her and with her. Deborah felt that she always had peers and instructors who understood difficult life situations.
"My classmates became much more than classmates-they became my friends and prayer buddies," she says. "This type of camaraderie may have been difficult to achieve at another college or university."
A member of the ADP′s first human services class, Deborah says that earning her degree was one of the most rewarding and satisfying experiences of her life. Although the curriculum can be challenging and fast-paced, she believes the program provided the education and encouragement she needed to achieve her goals. Deborah intends to use her degree to become a nurse educator or a case manager in a social service department, advocating for health benefits for underprivileged clients.
- by Abby Cruse