Alejundro Sanchez, Age 42
Works in customer service for a wireless company at a call center in Tampa, Florida, where he is enrolled in a cost-free program offered by his company in association with Bellevue University. His Success Coach is currently helping him to complete his Bachelor of Science in Call Center Operations & Management.
Q. Tell us about your educational journey: when did it begin for you?
I started going to school later in life, in 20s, and only because a friend of mine told me about working for a wireless company and they would pay for me to go to school. I picked a school on the West coast and went there for a few quarters. I kinda left there not knowing what I wanted to do, or if I was ever going back to school. I just wasn’t motivated by school.
Q . What did you do after you dropped out of school?
I just worked odd jobs here and there. I finally ended up at another wireless company, where I’ve been for the last 18 years.
Q. When did you decide to return to school?
It took over 10 years from my last college experience, and that’s when I found out about a program that work offered to help us advance ourselves. I’ve been working the call center at my wireless company now for several years and worked my way up doing a bunch of different jobs. But the one job I want in management requires a college degree. And that’s something I didn’t have or thought I would ever have.
Q. When did you first hear from a college Success Coach?
About 3 months ago. A woman named Janelle called. She said she was a college success coach. I was initially confused about the call and what was going on. But then I realized that this was amazing! She knew that I had some college experience but wasn’t finished with school. She told me how close I was to achieving my goals and that she would work with me step by step. It was really amazing because it was just the boost I needed to get me going in the right direction to finally getting my degree.
Q. How has working with a success coach helped you?
Once my success coach Janelle pointed me in the right direction and helped me lay out a strategic plan, I made the decision and went back in March. I’m in my third week now. I admit, it takes some effort for me to be on top of my time management, especially with working full time. But Janelle’s been with me every step of the way. She checks in with me a bunch and encourages me. She understands what I’m going through, especially when I get overwhelmed and feel like I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. She helps keep me focused on the finish line. I know now there’s no reason for me to stop, especially with all the support I’ve gotten from Janelle.
Q. Would you recommend a college success coach to others?
One hundred percent! If it wasn’t for my success coach sticking with me and taking the time to get to know me and understand my situation and and help me come up with a good plan and stick with it, I wouldn’t be in school today.