McAllen, TX and Helena, MT
Class of 2018
B.S. Liberal Studies with a Thematic Concentration in Organizational Communications and Health Administration
“I do not think I would have been able to have had the same support should I have attended another university.”
Why did you choose MSU Billings?
I chose MSUB because of the distance-learning option. As a non-traditional student, I had to maintain full-time employment throughout my college career. I worked in health care for a couple of years before going back to school for the second time in 2010 and found that MSUB offered a bachelor’s degree in health administration completely online.
Though I started out with a laser focus in health care, I soon began to see that a degree in communications would give me the tools I needed and wanted for my career future. Working in health care is so much more than hands on patient care. I knew I wanted to impact whole communities through outreach, advocacy, and patient engagement. This led me to the thematic concentration in organizational communications.
What do you like about MSU Billings?
Online classes can be very challenging as they require a lot of independent learning. It takes a lot of time, effort, and willingness to be proactive in your studies and maintain your course load.
During my time at MSUB, I felt that I could reach out to my instructors and professors at any time. They were all strong communicators and extra responsive to questions I had or problems I was experiencing and they were always willing to help navigate any hurdle. Without their commitment to answering my relentless bombardment of emails and phone calls, I would have been lost. I do not think I would have been able to have had the same support should I have attended another university.
What have you learned about yourself from your time at MSUB?
That God makes us much more resilient that we think. It took me eight years to complete my bachelor’s degree. I worked full time, the entire time. Some semesters I only took two classes, others I took five, and some I had to sit out because I needed a mental break. Life happens! I went through losing two loved ones, a failed marriage, and so many other unexpected bumps in the road. Many of these could have easily taken me off course or caused me to fail completely- but I didn’t. I persevered and I SUCCEEDED!
I learned that setting goals for yourself is exceedingly important. Your goals keep you focused, keep you grounded, and keep you moving and grinding forward when all you want to do is throw your hands up and quit. Progress is progress, no matter how slow. If you keep going, you will always be one-step closer to your goal than you were before.
What advice would you give to prospective students of MSUB?
My grandpa would always say “Today is your big, red-letter day. Today is the first day of the rest of your life!” You’ve made a great decision to pursue a college degree at MSUB. You will find that the education you receive here will open doors you never thought of entering.
Set goals. Study hard. Ask questions. Be an antagonist (at times). Remember why you started down this road to higher education in the first place. You will never regret your decision to go to college and it’s never too late to start! Today is the first day of the rest of YOUR life!