The life of a non-traditional college student, studying in the virtual classroom, can be quite hard. It involves late nights, sometimes limited F2F (face to face) connection with friends and family, and a monastic sort of disciplined study that even the most content introvert will sometimes struggle with. It’s also a journey of exploration; both of self and the world around us. It will teach you to think, plan, and grow. Strengths will shine, weaknesses will be magnified. Throughout your time as a student you will develop a strong set of professional skills (and personal awareness) that will allow you to overcome these obstacles. At times you will doubt your own ability to achieve your goals, but you will be wrong. It helps to have a muse of sorts, somebody who inspires you, somebody who has walked the path you are on and found the light. Why? To prove it is possible. For me that person, for the past several months, has been Anita Brown.
It probably comes as no surprise that students who study online practically live there; many of us thrive across multiple social networks. So it’s probably also not surprising that Anita and I met organically because of our mutual interest on Twitter; school pride. Being huge advocates of SUNY Empire State College (ESC) online (and in the real world), we soon found out we run in the same virtual circles. Through a combination of activity on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook I’ve been able to witness her excitement as she recently walked the stage for her Master’s degree. Since I’ve known Anita we’ve shared professional insight into areas such as women in business, and leadership. She’s offered expert guidance on how to navigate the sometimes muddy waters of life as a first year college student at ESC; everything from how to cope with not receiving textbooks on time, picking up some ESC swag, and the topic of student involvement with the school.
I’m not the first, and I’m sure I won’t be the last, but I just wanted to take a moment and say congratulations to another awesome person I’ve met through ESC. Good luck in your future endeavors Anita. You’re going to do great things!