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March 5, 2014 Continuing education students receive scholarships

Central Penn awarded $250 Non-traditional Student Week scholarships last term to three well-deserving Central Penn continuing education students. When reading the entries below, it’s easy to see why these motivated, busy adults were selected out of the 126 total entries.

Patti Rodichok – Criminal Justice Administration

“My children are my number one motivation for furthering my education here at Central Penn. Since the passing of my husband and my children’s father, I needed to find a way to support my children. This also allows for my children to learn that you are never too old to go back to school for a better education. Another motivation to continue my education at Central Penn is that I always had a passion for the legal field. I went through a situation with a very close loved one, who was a minor at the time and ended up on probation. The assigned probation officer has since helped my loved one get back on the right path. This is when I realized that it would be very rewarding if I could help another juvenile get back on the right path to live a productive life, and not a life of crime. So I set out to continue my education and pursue my bachelor’s degree in criminal justice so I could become a juvenile probation officer and try to help our juveniles get back on the right path. I will do the best I can to keep them from a life of crime. I know I will not be able to save them all, but I look at it that if I can save even one out of ten lives, that’s one life I saved.”

Stacey Shirk – Legal Studies

“Two years ago, I made the decision to change my career and go back to school. It was a decision that would change my life forever. Not only did I enroll in classes at Berks Technical Institute (BTI), but I became part of student council, holding the title vice president when I graduated. My two years in the paralegal program and in student council allowed me to give back to the community in ways I couldn't have imagined. BTI opened a door of opportunities for me and introduced me to people who would impact my education and my life. One of those people being Carmella Hoover, program director and a Central Penn alumna. Already, I can see why she not only encouraged me to continue my education, but also why she encouraged me to choose Central Penn College. Her vision of excellence comes from the education and experience she received at Central Penn. My hope is that I can take away from Central Penn the same ideals and use them to help others by giving back. I don't know that it’s what motivates as much as who motivates, and for me that made all the difference. Motivation is a crucial part of education, the part that allows us to want better for ourselves and gives us the power to make the change. You can. You will!”

Heather Miller – Business Administration with a concentration in Human Resource Management

“My motivation comes from a couple areas in life. My first motivation to get my degree is to feel the accomplishment that I finished what I started and was able to gain the confidence to do it. I always felt like something was standing in the way and there wasn't the "right time" to start college again because of working full-time and having four young children. I started to look around at better paying jobs to support my family and they all needed a bachelor's degree. I saw people advancing while I felt stagnant, and I really didn't like that feeling. That is when I decided I had more in me and I could go back to school, because now is the time to complete my dream. My other motivation is my four young kids. They see me not being happy in my present job and situation, and I started to think that I could be a better role model if I felt better about myself and did what I needed to do to advance in my career. My kids are ages three, six, 11 and 13. My two older ones already know they want, and need, to go to college to get a good-paying job, because life is expensive. They are proud of me for going back, and my family fully supports me, which will help throughout my college career. I feel very blessed to realize the motivations I have to go back to school and complete my dream are to become a better mom and better person, and to motivate my kids and other people to dare to dream and live it.”