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Professional Studies, BS
Grace Simonelli's Story
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“I didn't have the confidence that I would be able to move up above the branch manager level, and now I feel like I have the potential to go anywhere.”

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MEET
Grace Simonelli
Greenville, South Carolina • USA
Professional Studies, BS
Where I started

I started school at Bob Jones in 2006, and I was not sure which path I wanted to go in my career. I changed majors a couple of times, and when I dropped out in 2010, it felt impossible to have a stable, solid career. It just felt so far out of reach.

WHY I NEEDED SCOPE

Being a single mom, it seemed really overwhelming having to figure out childcare and attending classes. I really wasn't willing to give up time with my son in order to finish my degree. It was important to me to find something that was completely online.

WHAT I WANTED TO ACHIEVE

Being in a management position made me realize that I needed to go back and finish my degree. Within a year of getting the degree, I was promoted at my job. It really unlocked the potential for me to go anywhere and for me to continue to work my way up within the company.

From Waitress to Upper Management

When I dropped out in 2010, it felt impossible to have a stable, solid career. It just felt so far out of reach. A lot of people around me knew exactly what they wanted to do and were wholeheartedly pursuing that, and I felt lost. I felt like I didn’t know what I wanted to do, and it felt impossible to find the same level of passion that they had.

I started school at Bob Jones in 2006, and I was not sure which path I wanted to go in my career. So I changed majors a couple of times, and then in 2010, I decided that I needed to drop out and give myself time to figure out what I wanted to do. I was working a few different jobs in local stores in retail, and I also worked as a waitress around that time.

A friend of mine recommended that I take a job at a local credit union because she thought I would enjoy it. So I did, and I worked there for a couple of years. During that time, I did get married and I had a child. Then a few years later I ended up getting divorced. During the past few years, I worked my way up in the credit union into a management position.

Juggling Being a Single Working Mom with Going Back to School

Being in the management position and being a single mom really made me realize that I needed to go back and finish my degree. So I took a few classes at Greenville Tech first. I got an Associate of Arts there, but they didn’t offer any bachelor’s degrees. I looked at the University of South Carolina originally because they had a hybrid program for bachelor’s where you could do some in-person and some online.

But it just seemed really overwhelming having to figure out childcare and attending classes. A lot of them were in the evenings, and I really wasn’t willing to give up time with my son in order to finish my degree. It was important to me to find something that was completely online. That’s when I started looking at Bob Jones, and I found that they had the option for degree completion through SCOPE.

I really wasn't willing to give up time with my son in order to finish my degree. It was important to me to find something that was completely online. That's when I found SCOPE.

Grace Simonelli

Completing My Degree with Personal Advice and Support

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I called, and the process was very simple. I felt very comfortable talking to them and explaining my situation. My advisor was really great to work with. She was always available. She gave me a lot of input on which direction I needed to go. When I did my capstone project to finish the course and the degree, they provided a lot of support with that too.

It did require a lot of hands-on work, and it was a lot more than I had previously done in my other classes. I was worried about it being too much to handle, but they’re very supportive. They found options that I could do that I could fit into my schedule while being a mom and working.

Gaining the Confidence to Advance My Career

Completing the degree really gave me confidence that I can do this. Within a year of getting the degree, I was promoted at my job. Getting my degree really unlocked the potential for me to go anywhere.

Grace Simonelli

Completing the degree really gave me confidence that I can do this. Within a year of getting the degree, I was promoted at my job to the current job that I have. So I really feel like it helped me advance further on my career path when I found the field where I want to work in business.

I think that going back and getting my degree really unlocked the potential for me to go anywhere and for me to continue to work my way up within the company and maybe go to a higher level of management. I didn’t have the confidence that I would be able to move up above the branch manager level, and now I feel like I have the potential to go anywhere.

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