College: UNR, TMCC, NECB, WGU
I have attended many colleges and universities and my struggle has always been making time for school. I became successful early and working long hours has made it difficult to consistently attend school. To make matters worse, I also struggle with ADHD, OCD, Anxiety, and Depression. The mixture is terrible when trying to accomplish anything. I am actually quite intelligent and very capable of finishing school as evidenced by my transcripts and evaluations. There have been so many bumps in the road and I have been in and out of school for many years. I finally found a program through Western Governors University that makes things a million times easier since I can do everything at my own pace. I made a promise to my old foster mother and my biological grandmother when they both died that I would get my degree no matter what it takes. I have always intended to keep that promise and I will hopefully be done by the end of 2022!
In high school and my earlier college years, the plan was that I would become a lawyer. During the recession, I had a tough time finding a job and eventually found one working for a local Trust Company. While working with this company, I read through many legal documents and made the realization early on that I wouldn't enjoy reading and writing such documents for the rest of my life. Or at least not as much as I enjoyed the accounting and finance aspects of the job I was doing. It was then that I thought I would get into finance and work with investments. I later decided that I didn't want to deal with the risks and being responsible for peoples life savings, so I decided to stick with accounting. While I don't do anything with the stock market on a professional level, I do enjoy corporate accounting and finance roles. I have done remarkably well for someone without a degree and I catch on quick. In the accounting and finance fields, you really need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree for most companies to even look at you. Typically, a master’s degree or CPA license is required for most roles that align with my experience. I am at a point in my career where I am overqualified for lower-level accounting and finance roles, but underqualified for roles that align with my experience – simply because I haven't finished my degree. With a degree, finding employment at my experience level and salary will only become significantly easier. This alone is a monumental motivator to finish school as quickly as possible.
While I don't have a degree, not many can say they are able to bill $45-$75/hour for their work. Many also can't say that they do work that requires a significantly higher level of education than they have attained. I have always been resilient and able to find my way, even when I don't know how to do something. Once I figure out how to do something though, I am the best at it. Then I get bored and move onto something else. I can sometimes be slow at first, but I eventually excel at everything that I do. It may be my anxiety and OCD, but I am a perfectionist and I rarely give up. Life has forced me to figure things out on my own and find a way to make things work no matter what it takes. I have used my resourcefulness to get where I'm at today and I truly have no regrets about waiting to finish my degree. I know many people who went straight to college and either weren't able to use their degree or aren't happy with their chosen field. Had I gone straight to college, I would be a lawyer right now and very unhappy with my choice. My work experience took me down a path where I found a career I didn't know I wanted. I couldn't be happier that I waited to finish college.