Becoming an adult is not easy, plain and simple. Those last few years of high school are terrifying, and you are required to make many decisions that are going to affect the rest of your life at such a young, vulnerable age. Like many, when I was graduating, I had virtually no idea what I wanted to do the rest of my life. So I took the first step – furthering my education.
Going to college was the first decision, but there were so follow up choices. What to major in? Stay home? Move away? It was all so overwhelming. Ultimately, I decided on commuting to Indiana University Northwest from my apartment in Valparaiso. I was originally drawn to Indiana University Northwest because their AACSB accredited business program is highly rated. Before I began, I was disappointed that I wasn’t getting the ‘full college experience’ like many of my friends. I knew it was the practical choice, but I felt like I was missing out on the cliché things about living on a campus. However, I found so much more at IUN than I originally gave it credit for.
First, I found a prestigious, yet affordable education. I have met so many people that suffer the aftermath of student loan debt, and I was determined it would not be me. Therefore, alongside getting the education, I worked full time. My first year in college, I began working for the Best Buy here in Valparaiso. This was an amazing supplementary learning experience to IUN. First, Best Buy allowed me to learn the skills and apply the material my business professors were teaching in class. Additionally, I found a college job that PAID FOR MY COLLEGE through their tuition assistance program. It didn’t cover all of it, but it made a large dent in IUN’s affordable tuition. The rest I was able to pay for out of pocket with my working wages, part time jobs of babysitting and umpiring, and some help from my parents. By the end of my four year run, I had been promoted, and was able to add a year and a half of leadership experience to my resume. IUN’s class schedule was flexible enough to allow for all of this, which helped me to become a stronger candidate in the job market.
In addition, I found a support system. The professors and classmates I worked with on a daily basis were one of a kind. It’s the kind of environment where the professors knew all of our names, who we were, and how to help us succeed. Many of the assignments were real-world based, and helped to provide insight on many different business industries. Additionally, the students I worked with throughout the last four years helped to push me through many difficult classes and assignments. We encouraged each other through the endless group projects we shared, to get up the stairs to the 4th floor in Hawthorne (because ALL of the business classes were at the top of the biggest building, I swear!), and to keep the heals on through the many presentations we gave and job fairs the school put on for us. It was truly an environment where we all wanted to work together and help one another become the best version of ourselves.
So now this chapter comes to an end. I have about two more weeks until I can say my time at Indiana University has come to an end. I’m proud to say I will be graduating with my education paid-in-full and with my first entry-level job in the industry I was seeking out. Due to the skills I had learned from my education in addition to working retail, Ideas In Motion Media brought me as a part of their team. Even though it’s a few weeks until I can say I have my Bachelor’s Degree in Business, I can already say I have paid it off and I have found a full-time job doing what I love. Although becoming an adult is not easy, it’s has been a journey full of pride and success.