NAZ Parents Kelly and Elisha are both recent college graduates of Saint Paul College. Their ongoing work to prepare their children for college and life inspired them to invest in themselves as well.
Elisha, an illustrator, and Kelly, a computer scientist, had been homeschooling their scholars as part of a larger commitment to ensure their success. “Homeschooling for so many years made me want to do something for myself,” said Elisha.
Attending classes while homeschooling and working was challenging, and the pandemic added to the stress. Kelly says, “The toughest part was juggling home and school life. I hadn’t been in the classroom for 20 years. Getting up to go to classes was tough.” Their perseverance paid off, and Elisha graduated with an associates degree in sports and exercise science, and is currently enrolled in another program to be certified as a personal trainer. Kelly earned a degree in computer graphics and visualization.
“My kids say, ‘If Mom and Dad can do it, we can too.' They are really focused on college now. My oldest son is now planning to attend Saint Paul College just like we did.”
See Elisha and Kelly get their flowers at last summer's Family Academy graduation celebration.
Kelly and Elisha’s scholars were part of the magic that got them through the work. Elisha says, “My kids were so proud of us. They encouraged us through our challenges and obstacles.” Hired, a NAZ anchor partner, also played a critical role in providing the family a safety net as they worked toward their goals. “HIRED helped us with transportation, like bus cards or filling out financial aid. When we finally got a car, they helped us with gas cards,” said Kelly.
An unexpected and exciting side effect of pursuing their academic goals has been the inspiration the experience has offered to their children. “My kids say, ‘If Mom and Dad can do it, we can too,’” said Elisha. “They are really focused on college now. My oldest son is now planning to attend Saint Paul College just like we did.”