As a 31-year-old mother of two, life is pretty busy for Morgan Richards. She recently moved her family from Dubai to Phoenix, has a full-time job and recently added pursuing her college degree to her to-do list. It would have been easy for Morgan to put her goals of earning her degree aside due to her hectic schedule, but when she read about Arizona State University (ASU) and edX’s Global Freshman Academy (GFA), Morgan knew it was time to go back to school for her degree.
Morgan previously attended classes on a college campus years ago but decided to take time when she learned she was expecting her second child. While she had always planned to go back to school, she figured it would be much later in life once her kids were older. The idea of attending classes, juggling family and work just didn’t seem feasible at this stage in her life. She then learned about Global Freshman Academy. After doing some research, she learned that she could take courses online on her own time, from anywhere. Knowing that she could sign up for a few courses and later determine if she wanted to invest in the credits was a realistic and comfortable first step for someone dipping their toe back into school.
“I loved that I could take my classes anywhere, in Dubai and Phoenix, and those classes can transfer to ASU courses,” she says. “I took my classes when my kids were at school or after I put them to bed, allowing me to pursue my education without sacrificing family time.”
Often that first step is the most trying but for Morgan, it ignited a spark. Not only has Global Freshman Academy given Morgan the opportunity to pursue her degree again, it has also given her the determination she needed to stay on track. “GFA has given me the motivation to continue to pursue my degree because once I started, it kicked me into gear,” Morgan says. “I wasn’t nervous when I enrolled in the courses because it is completely online so it isn’t taking away from my time at home.”
I took my classes when my kids were at school or after I put them to bed, allowing me to pursue my education without sacrificing family time.
To stay on track, Morgan dedicates an hour per day during the week to her courses, which was tough during her recent move back to the United States. “Time management is key,” she says. “It is all about making time and incorporating it into your schedule so it becomes routine. The edX adaptive and personalized courses really help me keep on top of my coursework.” While Morgan has been taking courses from all over the globe, she still has the chance to interact with fellow GFA students. “One of the classes I am enrolled in right now has a group Facebook page that allows all of us to post and interact with each other,” she says.“It’s has been really encouraging and a great resource for questions if we run into a problem.”
Morgan’s goal is to eventually transfer the credits that she has earned with Global Freshman Academy to Arizona State University where she plans to finish earning her bachelor’s degree on campus. “I have always wanted to go to ASU, so GFA is the perfect choice for me because the classes I am taking online right now can transfer with me when I attend Arizona State University in the future.”
Morgan is well on her way to completing her freshman year as she has already earned two-course credits with GFA and is currently enrolled in three additional courses. She plans to enroll on campus in September to continue on her journey to earning her degree.