The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Busy moms weigh future advantages of returning to school, juggling lives

By Maria Asprilla/reporter

Adria Weaver, a mother of two, is currently enrolled in the NE Campus RTVB program and juggling the job of being a mother.
Georgia Phillips/The Collegian

Moms have always juggled many roles at once: disciplinarian, teacher, provider, counselor, cook, housekeeper, referee. Not uncommon is the added role of college student.

Busy moms decide to return to school and earn a degree for many reasons. According to the online site CourseAdvisor, “women college graduates age 25 and older earned 82 percent more than women with only a high school diploma — almost double the pay.”

Moms return to school for other reasons such as to accomplish a personal goal or enrich their lives, according to Lisa Ruffino of CourseAdvisor.

Yvette Ballweg, an education major on NW Campus, fits that category.

“I wanted to do something for myself,” she said.

After years of focusing on marriage and raising her now-10-year-old daughter Christyn, she decided to work toward becoming a special education teacher. However, although she admits to feeling spread thin sometimes, returning to school at a later stage in life has benefits.

“I’m more focused than I was in high school, more focused on my studies,” she said.

Waking up at 5:30 a.m. every day isn’t easy, but she is happy balancing motherhood with school and work.

“It helps knowing my priorities in life,” she said.

Ballweg hopes to transfer to Tarleton State University after completing two years at TCC.

Adria Weaver, a musician and NE Campus RTVB major, returned to college after a 15-year hiatus to gain insight into a new career.

After writing a song for a movie, Weaver started a film production company with a close friend.

“It’s been stressful financially, but I really enjoy being here,” she said.

She has two daughters: Brendyn, 12, and Mercy, 11.

“Brendyn encouraged me to go back to school,” she said. Still, “they do complain that ‘we never see you.’”

Weaver said she actually has more family time than when she worked 60 hours a week as an administrative assistant. A flexible class schedule allows time to help her daughters with homework and make breakfast before seeing them off to school.

Anticipating graduation this December, Weaver is excited to take what she has learned to expand on her career in music.

As a Fort Worth psychologist whose major topic of study was maternal attachment, Dr. Anita Webb has special insight into how the stress of college can affect the family dynamic.

“Consider resources including support systems … the more resources, the less stress, the less impact on mom and family,” she said.

Webb listed things such as an encouraging husband, relatives who will babysit, good health and good organizational skills as factors that will help college moms succeed.

“My view is that [college moms] are awesome,” she said. “In terms of stress, it depends on multiple interwoven factors, not one-size-fits-all.”

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