Bridge to College Alumni: Lisa Skowron

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  • Completed two-semester Bridge-to-College Program Fall Semester 2007
  • Attended Senator Leahy’s 14th Annual Economic Opportunity Conference for Women (Official photo with the Senator)
  • Awarded Bennington Business and Professional Women Scholarship for Non-traditional Female Students 2007
  • Awarded A.A.U.W.–Bennington Scholarship for Non-traditional Female Students January 2008
  • Won Honorable Mention Award and $50 for poem entry to WeLEARN
  • Continued college course at CCV-Bennington, Spring Semester 2008

In her own words:

I am a recent graduate of the Bridge-to-College Program and I am writing to share with you the experience I had participating in the program.  There are so many aspects of the Program that surpassed my expectations when I entered the program that I don’t know where to begin.

I was referred to the program by my sister, who was a first-semester graduate. I was very reluctant about joining the program due to the fact that I had an overwhelming fear that my accomplishments in life would not be “college” worthy.  After all, I had been a homemaker and mother and had not participated in any formal schooling for over ten years.

The opportunity of having mentors and guest speakers available to speak during the program opened up a doorway into the community for networking and invaluable resources that do no seem available to a person because they don’t know how to access them.  This important aspect of the program allowed a flow of communication not only amongst the presenters and the Program students, but the students in the Program and the college staff as well.

I can not express how much I valued the college field trips and that I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the 11th Annual Vermont Women’s Economic Conference on November 3, 2007.  I met Senator Leahy and participated in invaluable workshops there.  I took the information and knowledge I gained from this experience and passed it on to my twin teenage daughters. Because of what I have learned I feel more confident personally and feel that I am able to educate them on the importance of being a financially secure woman.

My only “problem” with the BTC Program is that funding should allow for it to run longer.  Even though some student could stand on their own when it was time to cross that bridge from BTC to college, there were some of us who definitely needed to work longer on some aspects of the foundations of learning.  Non-traditional students are coming from all different life circumstances and different learning styles, and I feel people in transition need more time before they are ready to walk that bridge.

However, the BTC Program work gave me that confidence and eased my anxiety, because I was walked through each step.  My hand was held when needed and let go when I needed to cross the “Bridge to College.”  Therefore, I walk away from the Bridge-to-College Program with invaluable knowledge and resources.  Without this Program I would have not had access to such resources for financial reasons and I would have let anxiety and self doubt stop me from furthering my education as I had let it so many times before.

I would like to thank you for the opportunity to participate in the Bridge to College Program.

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