Graduation Story: Kerry Bishop
We asked graduates to share their journey to graduation. Here is what Kerry Bishop (Environmental Policy and Management) had to say in her own words…
In August 2007, I found myself divorced with three very young children. I was 37 years old with only a high school diploma, no home, no job and one of my boys was disabled. I knew that I had to do something to provide for my family. I started my journey in 2009; I was receiving help from the state through Section 8 housing, food stamps and SSI for my disabled son; I decided at that point that I needed to go to college. I received my bachelor’s in Environmental Studies in 2013, through online courses. I then found an intern position at the Water Utility in Albuquerque; my hours were awful, 2 am to 10 am. But the job was a perfect fit for my degree. One of the inspectors retired in the summer of 2013, and I applied for her position and low and behold I got the job!
I am still working with the Water Authority, and my children are now eight years older, my oldest son (with autism) is 16, my middle son is 14, and my youngest is 12. They have been so supportive and proud! My youngest told me just the other day how proud he was of me; he was only four years old when I started this journey. I pushed my way through it with the help of my boys, my mom, my dad, my brother and my boyfriend. Now I have my master’s in Environmental Policy and Management, and I have a great job! I purchased my very first home… ever! I am no longer on state assistance, and my self-esteem has blossomed. My mentality now is that I can do whatever I put my mind to; I have learned through the years to adjust to situations and work through the bumps along the way. This has been an unforgettable journey, and I am very grateful for the patience and understanding my loved ones have shown me.