Thursday, July 7, 2016

Success Story: Amanda Heck

Amanda Heck always had an interest in college, but like many others at Peirce, she didn’t have a clear cut path to school.

“My family wasn’t really supportive of me going to college,” Amanda explained. “I knew that if I wanted to go, [I’d need] straight A’s and a scholarship.  I didn’t have anyone to cosign my loans.  With a lot of effort, I got a scholarship to Burlington County Community College.”

Amanda eventually took a few years off after purchasing a house with her husband.  Despite her break, Amanda was eager to enroll in school again.  She was the 4th person in her family to graduate from high school, and would be the first one to attend college.  She was determined to complete her education and earn her degree, and as luck would have it, she discovered the perfect school for her at work.

“There was a college fair at my office-Peirce answered all of my questions,” Amanda says. “ [At] other schools it was hard to get a hold of people and have my questions answered, but at Peirce my representative was literally on call for any question.  I had her cell phone number and would call all the time!”

Despite her eagerness to learn, a few obstacles stood in Amanda’s way. Money was a big concern, as well as how she would manage her time.

“I had a lot of fears money wise, and [it was also] a big commitment on time.  But Peirce helped me with the money and the online classes made me feel better about time.  I just knew I had to finish,” Amanda said. “I didn’t apply for student loans because my advisor and admissions rep encouraged me to apply for scholarships.  Between the scholarships and a tuition discount from work I didn’t have to take out student loans, and I graduated debt free.”

Finding money for school was easier than Amanda had thought it would be, but she still had other worries about attending.  She had earned a lot of credits from her community college days, and she didn’t want all of the hard work to go to waste.  Fortunately, Amanda had nothing to worry about.

“Transferring credits was my main concern.  Peirce had a smooth credit transfer and partnership with the college. Almost all of my credits transferred.  Since I already had an associate’s in accounting, I didn’t have to test out of any accounting prerequisite classes.  I could go straight to taking an upper level accounting class.”

Amanda’s situation couldn’t have worked out better for her, she now had everything she needed to finally earn her degree.  It didn’t take long for her to finish, and she used one word when asked to describe her graduation: Amazing.

“I was the first person to graduate in my family and I remember thinking, ‘I’m going to make a lot of money!’” Amanda said. “I have my dream job.  I know a lot of people who are miserable in their work life and I go to work every day loving what I do.  I manage costs associated with major projects.  I love numbers, and getting to work with them all day is a dream.”

Earning her bachelor’s was an important achievement for Amanda, but she got more than a piece of paper from Peirce.  Her classes taught her valuable skills, and continue to help her throughout her career.

“My bachelor’s degree is essential to what I do now. Also, Peirce’s classes are professional, and the professors prepared me for the real world. They would even help me if I had questions about my job at the time. Without my bachelor’s degree I wouldn’t be where I’m at now.  I was laid off from my corporate office, but I was able to find another job quickly.  That wouldn’t have happened without my bachelor’s. “

Despite being busy with work, she still manages to find time to talk to others about attending school at Peirce.  It’s truly something she can’t recommend enough. 

“I still recommend Peirce! If I hear someone say that they can’t do it, I’m like yes you can! Peirce can help you.  If I can do it with Peirce anyone can.” 

If you want to know more about how your existing college credits might transfer into earning your degree at Peirce College, click here.