Breaking Tradition: College as a Military Spouse

Have you ever heard of the “traditional” order of college and other major life events for post-high school students? That go to college, get a career, THEN get married and start a family life order of events? Well, many of us have grown up hearing about it and in turn have felt pressure because of it. Traditionally, that has been the order that has taken place for most people. And some of us have been able to still follow that traditional timeline today, and it has worked out great for our goals and our lives – which is absolutely fantastic! But many of us are also breaking that tradition, and bending all of the rules, especially military spouses – and that is absolutely fantastic also!


Who says you can’t go back to college after you’ve gotten married? Or after you’ve had a baby, or maybe three? Or how about after you’ve taken some time off after graduating high school? No one! Today, many military spouses are smashing the stigma that if you don’t go to college right after high school you won’t ever complete your education goals. They are ending the stigma altogether that you can’t complete your education goals as a military spouse. And I think it’s amazing!


What is great about today’s society is that college doesn’t have to come right after high school, you can go back whenever the time is right for you! You can go back as a military spouse, as a mom, as whoever you are and wherever you’re at in life!


For me, personally one of the biggest topics that came up with my family when I got engaged to my service member was the question of whether or not I’d be able to complete my education goals that I had been working so hard toward. I was in love and when you meet the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with, you begin to look at things differently and start to figure out how you can accomplish your goals while being together. And so, I did things out of order. I graduated high school, started college, got married, took time off of college, then went back and finished school. Now I’m a new mom and perfectly happy to share my stories with our daughter when she’s older; to inspire her to achieve her goals no matter what challenges may come her way, or stigmas that may be stacked against her, and to show her that there is always a way to reach her goals as long as she remains determined.


Needless to say, I was proud when I received my professional certificate from Martinsburg College during my time between my degree studies. I was proud when I walked across the stage, at 9 months pregnant, and received my diploma for my Bachelor’s degree. And I was proud to fulfill the promises I made to myself and to my family about finishing my education goals.


I am a military spouse, and I did it! I finished school. I have been successful since because of it. And if I can do it, you can do it! It doesn’t matter where you’re at in life – if you’ve been a military spouse for a day or for ten years, if you’re a mom of none or of four, if you’re stationed in paradise or in the middle of no where – it’s all possible! And schools like Martinsburg College help to ensure we are able to achieve our education goals as military spouses!


What I loved most about Martinsburg College was the flexibility of their programs. I was able to complete a professional certificate with them that complimented my degree major and it allowed me to fill the gap of my “time off” from completing my degree.  The program fit with my work schedule, and I was able to work ahead to give myself time off to spend with my husband when he was home from the field.  Even better, I qualified for military spouse education benefits that covered the entire cost of my program plus books. I was on cloud nine, and so grateful to be working toward my education while we were stationed in a very desolate location.


Like I said before, if I can do it, you can do it! If you’re a military spouse in a spot where you feel that it’s nearly impossible to complete your education, check out Martinsburg College. They may have the perfect fit for you and your situation. Smash the stigma and accomplish your education goals! To all military spouses – you’ve got this!