Monday, June 1, 2015

Philly Mom Finds the Formula for Earning a Master’s Degree

June 11th will be a big day for Lourdes Jesukiewicz. The mother of four will be walking at Peirce College’s 2015 Commencement ceremony to get her master’s degree. This diploma will officially make Lourdes a two-time Peirce graduate. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Peirce and is a member of Peirce’s first class of master’s degree graduates.

Lourdes enrolled in Peirce’s Organizational Leadership & Management degree program in 2013, when our program launched. Two short years later, the 47-year-old says, “I’m a completely different person. I’m so much more confident. I can add value, and I know that now.”
Lourdes Jesukiewicz

How did Lourdes do it? We caught up with her to learn more about her Peirce experience:

Why did you decide to go back to school to earn your bachelor’s and master’s degrees?
I had a secretarial job with no room for advancement. Every day was the same thing and I wanted to set myself up for greater success in my career and be a stronger role model for my children. I first enrolled at Peirce in October 2011 to finish my bachelor’s degree, which I completed in December 2012. But I didn’t want to stop there! As soon as I found out that Peirce was offering a master’s degree program, I jumped to enroll with the first class the following September.

What made you want to continue at Peirce to earn your master’s in Organizational Leadership and Management?
I knew I would get the same support system I got as an undergraduate adult learner. When I first applied to Peirce for my bachelor’s degree, the admissions department walked me through everything I needed to know to enroll and made me less scared about managing my education with work, family, and everything else in my life.

Did you get the support you expected as a Peirce master’s degree student?
Beyond. Everyone at Peirce wanted me to succeed. I had a whole team of people—from admissions to financial aid to professors and fellow students—rooting for me. My peers were really important, too. We had such a great supportive environment with one another because we were all coming from the same place.

Any words of wisdom to pass on to students who are enrolled in a master’s degree program right now?
Form relationships. Network. The people you meet will be bridges to new opportunities. Focus on time management. It is critical to staying organized and on track. And find a support system. My husband, kids, and the entire Peirce community were my support system.

What would you say to prospective students who are on the fence about going back to school?
I would be such a cheerleader for them—just cheering, “Do it! Do it!” I went back to finish my undergraduate degree in 2011 and now I’m finishing my graduate degree. I’m a completely different person. I’m so much more confident. I can add value, and I know that now. Peirce was the best decision I ever made.

What is the best thing about getting your master’s degree?
Getting access to new career opportunities, gaining confidence, building my leadership skills. I’m ready to take the next step!

Any parting words about your overall experience at Peirce?
I would do anything for Peirce! They made me who I am today.

Congratulations on earning your master’s degree, Lourdes! We can’t wait to watch you walk across the stage of the Kimmel Center at commencement next week!