Dia Liggons

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Meet Dia!

I have always had a heart for education and wanted to be a doctor. But, I didn’t do well in school and didn’t think I would be accepted to college. When I graduated from high school, I assumed I would find a job, start making money, and have the means to take care of myself. I thought that I’d enroll in community college part-time, but I had no desire to go to a 4-year university. I also didn’t have the grades to get into the school I really wanted to go to. However, my mom was very serious about me applying to a 4-year school and really encouraged me to pursue a BA. So I did and I started my college journey at the University of Maryland - Eastern Shore.

In college, I started out feeling really unsuccessful and was extremely home sick. I thought that I was not cut out for college and wanted to return home. My mom--who is also my mentor--encouraged me to keep at it. I went on to graduate with honors.

Q: WHAT'S YOUR COLLEGE-JOURNEY STORY?

My college experiences had many ups and downs. In my master’s and doctorate programs I was definitely the youngest in the program, and at times it was really lonely. I didn’t feel like I belonged, but along the way people encouraged me and I finished both degrees.

Q: WHAT INSPIRES YOU ABOUT COLLEGE RE-ENROLLMENT?

My doctorate degree took 7 years, and life was so tough during this degree. What I anticipated taking 4 years to complete took 7 years to complete. I was so upset at times and wanted to quit. I lost a lot during this time--my house, my job, and I had to take break from school. I felt so bad and thought I would never finish. Editing my dissertation took a year to complete because there were so many grammatical and formatting errors. While there were an endless number of edits to make, I DID graduate. So I know that re-enrollment works. Obstacles will come your way, but you can also overcome them.

Q: WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR STUDENTS CONSIDERING RE-ENROLLMENT?

You can do it! No matter how bad you feel about taking a break or what obstacles you have in life, you can do it! One class at a time.