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Even More about Me: My Nontrad Journey

It all started with my personal journey back to school to get my teaching certification.

I had just gotten laid off from my job in the printing industry.

I thought that I could keep at my same career OR I could start over and become a teacher. I have always loved the English language, and writing, plus it only took 2 years vs. 4 to go into English teaching vs. Art teaching, so that is what I picked.

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I decided to try Teacher Education and teach art. I live in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and had gone to WKU before. I decided to try face-to-face classes as an older student. I was 49.

While I was at Western, I decided to re-start the Western Kentucky University Non-Traditional Student Group. It was a big job, but I had some good friends to help me. I made some good friends there.

Some of what I learned:

I had so much to learn about being a non-traditional student. I was not sure how I would ever get everything done.

I wondered if I were taking the right classes, or even if I should be back in school. Was I picking the right area to pursue? Should I have gone into another field?

It was scary...

I was filled with doubt. As I muddled through my classes, I spent a lot of time motivating myself and making mistakes. I also spent a lot of time finding information that I needed as a non-traditional student.

Now I have learned a lot and can share it with other non-traditional students. I am more organized now, that's for sure. I want to share what I learned with other non-traditional students.

Connecting with others...

One thing I learned about is how important it is to connect to other students and share knowledge and experience.

For instance, I found that study groups helped me so much when I was going to class. I could study with the study groups before a test, for instance, and my grades were a lot better than they would have been without the group.

What other people know

I also found out that the people at college offices don't always know everything about each field. It pays to do research and ask the hard questions of professors and teachers.

Some questions that are important: What loans are best? What professors really help you? I like the Profeval site a lot, and there are some other good links on the links page here on the site.

For good scholarships, go to the Scholarships Link page.

Asking questions

I started to ask questions, even though as a shy person, they were hard to ask. After I asked the first questions, the next ones became much easier. I asked the professors what we needed to know for the tests and I asked my classmates if they wanted to be in a study group with me.

My professors were glad when their students asked questions, and they were glad to answer. My classmates sometimes did not have time for a study group, but most of the time they were glad that somebody had the idea.

We met after school, or sometimes before class. We asked each other questions, and we got a much better idea of what might be on tests or quizzes. I am sure that my grade went up at least one grade point for every study group.

Sometimes a person just has to ask - even if he or she feels stupid asking, because the more you know about things, the better choices you are going to make.

Connections

When I found a newsgroup that talked about non-traditional student issues, I was so glad. I even made a newsgroup for the group to keep everyone informed.

It was great to be able to talk about non-traditional issues with other students. My hope is to make this site a connection point for people that want to discuss nontraditional issues and make connections here.

If you didn't check these out from my the About Me Page, I have some other sites for Nontrads to check out.

I have a Facebook page for nontraditional students, Twitter on the Twitter Nontrads page, and have a Nontraditional student blog too. Come and visit - - we would love to have you there.

Please help me with your ideas, because I would love to have them. Write me and let me know what would be good on this site. And thanks!

Click on My "About Me" Page to learn more.

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