The letter below was written by Elizabeth Scott, a post-program FSH participant. Elizabeth is a proud University of Louisville graduate. She holds a Masters of Social Work and has dedicated her life to helping others. She is a dedicated mother to two children. The words she wrote below are intended for new FSH participants–she has given permission for them to be shared here. They are words of hope, of encouragement, and of determination. Three things crucial to the families who are FSH! Really, three things crucial to all of us!
You don’t have to wait until New Year’s to make a resolution or set a new goal. Every day is a turning point and there’s no time like now to make a change! Congratulations on becoming a part of Family Scholar House–through FSH you will gain access to a multitude of resources that can help you overcome just about any obstacle you may encounter. As a graduate of the program I wish to offer you encouragement and a few success tips that I picked up along the way.
It is important to prioritize and balance your time wisely. I had never attended school on a full-time basis prior to coming to FSH and had to adjust quickly. There will be some people, places and things that will have to be let go of in order to maintain your full schedule. Surround yourself with like-minded residents and build a good support system.
Take advantage of all the happenings at FHS. It’s a good opportunity to meet new people, and gives you and your children free and fun activities to be involved in together. Utilize services such as counseling, financial management, and workshops on an array of topics. Community members often volunteer their time and offer useful services.
One of the best things you can do to have a successful career (besides the obvious of academic success) is to establish contacts by networking. FSH has ample opportunities to volunteer and represent the organization; for example, you may host a home tour or join the Speakers Bureau. Take every opportunity to meet people in your field of choice and key community members. I suggest creating business cards for a more professional introduction, even if it just states you are student.
Always, always, always follow-up with thank-you notes! FSH is knit together by a lot of volunteers who ask for nothing in return, they simply want to help you reach your goal and support and encourage your family along the way. Saying “thank-you” matters.
No two people have the exact same path. I encourage you to find your way by making the most of what FSH has to offer. Talk openly with your case manager. Be honest. Grow from this experience. If you’re anything like me, in no time your confidence will soar with increased stability, you will have a firm foundation of academic resources, and most importantly you’ll be a positive role model to the most precious ones in your life! “My mommy rocks,” says my daughter Nevaeh, age 9!
I wish you success in all your endeavors!