"Early Mama" Victoria graduated from Metropolitan State University of Denver this past Spring with a degree in Broadcasting. It took her six years (three of which were spent balancing being a mom and employee, as well), but she did it. She walked across that stage as her little boy looked up to her and cheered. She accepted her diploma with more pride and accomplishment than most of the other graduates could comprehend.
That's because she did what so many say is impossible. She completed all of the assignments and projects and testing, while also tending to fevers and boo-boos and toddlerhood, while also making money for her grown-up family. She had Big Girl responsibilities, and she rose to the challenge.
In fact, she credits her son for inspiring and motivating her to finish her degree.
Her cap reads: "My son inspired me, mom & hubby supported me, TOGETHER we all made this dream a reality!"
For the other student mamas out there, here's some advice from Victoria:
"I’m not going to sugar-coat it, going to college when you’re a mom is quite possibly the hardest thing you’ll ever do. However, it can be done! And I am living proof of that.
I will make this short and sweet. Please, please for the love of granola bars find yourself a support team. A reliable one. A consistent one. A team that will be there with you ‘till you walk across that stage. It can be done without a team, but that would pretty much be equivalent to torture. Um, no thanks.
For me, my team was my mother and my husband. They made a commitment to help me with my son so I could go to school full time and focus on graduating. After getting pregnant, it only took three years for me to get my degree. They were by far the most challenging and brutal three years of my life, but I came out a completely changed woman. I am stronger and much more confident in my ability to deal with adversity, but I do recognize that there is no way in hell I would have been able to do this alone. Find yourself a team to cheer you on along with way, a team who will be there for you when you’re emotionally, physically and mentally checked out. Find yourself a team who will never let you quit. I thought of quitting a billion times, and that’s where my mother and husband would step in. And today, thanks to all of us, I have a degree hanging on my wall."
— Victoria Garcia
Looking for more tips on balancing college and motherhood?