An Ending & A New Beginning
by Brandy Esham
For 15 years Jennifer Carpenter and her husband Joe worked at a factory in their hometown. Cintas was a source of stability for their family and their home. But in January 2009, that changed. Corporate leaders informed Cintas’ workers that the plant would be moving production to Mexico. A lot of worries and fears entered Jennifer’s mind. As a mother of 3, how would she and her husband, both who would now be unemployed, support their family?
A sense of relief came when representatives from TENCO Workforce Development and Maysville Community & Technical College (MCTC) came to Cintas and presented the Dislocated Workers Program. The Dislocated Workers Program, a partnership between TENCO Workforce Development and MCTC, with the goal to provide quality employment and training services to assist eligible individuals in finding and qualifying for meaningful employment. Through this program, Jennifer would be able to attend college, a goal she had always had but was never able to achieve because she needed to work in order to support her family. But Jennifer’s worries and fears were not completely dismissed, she still had one looming fear; she was 34 with 3 children at home, could she handle going to college full time too?
“It was a challenge for both of us but we were determined to make our lives better for our children.”
With determination and the goal of a better future, Jennifer enrolled at MCTC in June 2009. Even though she was a non-traditional student Jennifer quickly found her place at MCTC. She became a Student Ambassador for the Rowan Campus and was elected Vice President of the Student Government Association. In May 2011, Jennifer and her husband Joe graduated from MCTC with an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science. Jennifer is thankful for the support and help she received as a student at MCTC:
“The staff at MCTC went out of their way to accommodate all students on class work, schedules and even job placement near graduation. We made friendships and connections that will last for a lifetime.”
But Jennifer’s association with MCTC hasn’t ended, she is a member of the MCTC Advisory Committee and as a Human Resource Professional with Cooper Standard, she attends MCTC workshops and career events as a guest speaker. A privilege that seems surreal to Jennifer:
“It’s kind of ironic that the professors and MCTC staff call on me to be a professional guest speaker for their classes and rely on me and my connections for placement of work studies and internships.”
Looking back on that uncertain time in her life, Jennifer is glad she made the decision to attend college at MCTC:
“I am so thankful for the dislocated workers program and the support from all the staff at MCTC and for making the transition from unemployed to a non-traditional student easy and doable. My husband and myself wouldn’t be as successful in our careers if we wouldn’t have made the decision to go back to school at MCTC.”
If you find yourself in situation similar to Jennifer, you too can better your future! Following her example, reach out to MCTC’s Admissions Department today and see what bright future awaits you!
To contact a member of the MCTC Admissions Department, visit: http://bit.ly/2AFycYE