Evening Programs One Way “Possible Happens Here”

Evening Programs One Way “Possible Happens Here”

It’s nearly the end of the workday and I get a reminder on my computer, *Ding* time for a call. I click into the reminder and smile. I’ve been waiting for this call all week. I clean up my desk of loose Post-it Notes, highlighters and rogue coffee mugs, pop on my headset and make the call. The dial tone rings in my ears until, “Hello?” “Good afternoon!” I reply, “Is this Alysia?” “Yes, it is,” I hear back. “Congratulations Alysia! Your application to Fresno Pacific University has been accepted!”

I have worked as an outreach and admission representative at FPU’s North Fresno Campus for over a year and I still get excited when I have the privilege of making these types of calls. In my role, I work with mostly adult students in the 30–50-year range who are looking to complete their college degree. For many of these potential students, they have some college experience, but life happened and they had to step away from pursuing their degree. Maybe they had a child, started a new job or a family member passed away: every student comes with a different story. Now, what kept them back has passed, and they have an opportunity to continue their education. That’s where I come in. I have the unique role of coming alongside students to help them move one step closer to achieving their bachelor’s degree.

I am constantly encouraged by the conversations I have with potential students as they share their passion and drive. Many are first-generation college students and getting a bachelor’s has been a lifelong goal. I am grateful that FPU offers evening programs like our degree completion format to provide our adult students the opportunity to achieve their educational dreams, even with day-time responsibilities. Evening classes help remove one more barrier that often prevents people from attempting to continue their education. The development of programs like these reinforces the way FPU supports their students and employees by making “possible happen here.”

Saying that the FPU community is like a family is more than just a statement for me. It’s a daily practice that is lived out by my team members, co-workers and superiors. The care and support that I experience as an FPU employee encourages and empowers me to have the same attitude during my interactions with future students. We truly are a community who rejoices with those who rejoice and mourns with those who mourn (Romans 12:15 NIV). The benefit of FPU is that this same community is offered whether you are staff, faculty, student or even a potential applicant. I hope that you all remain encouraged and stay connected, “forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead” (Philippians 3:13 NIV).

Connections
Mitchel Walter

Mitchel Walter

Outreach and Admission Representative, North Fresno Campus