An education is probably one of the most important things one will ever receive in life. It shapes your views, beliefs, and values, and it can come from just about anywhere. We are all continually learning and progressing even when we aren’t aware of it. Some forms of education carry more weight than others; take a college education, for example. Though not a requirement in the working world, it opens many doors and provides valuable experiences that are paramount to a career that looms tantalizingly on the horizon.
Sherry Cepolski is in the process of getting her college education at Calumet College of St. Joseph. She’s perusing a bachelor’s degree in Forensic Accounting. Forensic Accounting is a major in Accounting along with a background in Criminal Justice.
“To me this was the best of both worlds. I choose Calumet College because of how diversified it is. This college is really accommodating to busy people such as me, who are working full-time, raising a family, and still pushing to get a college education,” Cepolski said.
A mother of three with a full-time job, Cepolski is a busy woman with a lot of responsibility. She knew that she wanted a good life for her and her family, but at first she didn’t see college as a possibility due to her busy life. She changed her tune when she saw the success of a friend in school.
“A friend of mine was attending college and really encouraged that I give it a try. The reasons were that a college education would open up a lot of opportunities for me and it would also make me feel better about myself to be better educated,” Cepolski said.
Staying on top of everything all the time can be tough for anyone, but Cepolski knew that in order for her family to benefit from this in the long run she would have to get creative and stick to her plan.
“With the help of my family and friends pushing me, as well as the professors being supportive and working with me, I never gave in. I even had to take a break from school due to one of my daughters falling ill with kidney problems,” Cepolski said. “After I decided to go back, I still had the support of the professors, academic advisors, and the tutoring center. It really helps when you know you are not alone and also to know you have a good support team in place. As my time at CCSJ is winding down, I look back and realize that I do not think I could have done this anywhere else.”
With big ideas at the ready, Cepolski is excited for what the future holds. She hopes that her experience can help others in the same situation to know that there is a way, you just have to keep working at it. And she wants to be a good example to her kids, showing them that if you have a dream, you can make it come true no matter how the odds are stacked against you.
“I really hope to encourage my girls that nothing is impossible. No matter how busy life gets or how much you think you cannot do something, just push yourself because you never know what you are capable of. I want them to be strong and confident as well as well-educated,” Cepolski said. “Just to know that I have so many options and knowing I can do basically what I want with my education, that alone is satisfaction.”