Minnesota School of Business-Rochester recently spent some time with one of our most committed and passionate students, Tammy Wolford, to learn about her experience at our school. Learn how her life has added value to her criminal justice degree and how her degree will bring value to the lives of others.
- Why did you choose to come back to school?
When I was younger I didn’t think college was for me. I didn’t think I would cut it. During my years growing up, I took some wrong turns and headed down the wrong path in my life. I decided that I needed to turn things around. I got some help and started putting pieces back together during this time. I was job hunting and, as we all know, employment opportunities were few and far between. So I started thinking about school and I just thought ‘why can’t I?’ I can do this. I am smart. And there is no reason why I can’t. I didn’t just want some lame job; I wanted to find a career—something I loved to do. And to do this, I knew I would need to go back to school.
- What was your biggest challenge in making this decision?
I think my biggest challenge was trying to decide where I wanted to go. Did I want to try a bigger school or a smaller school—or did I want to go strictly online? For me, it came down to class size. I also wanted to be able to go residentially if I could, because while starting out I wasn’t sure how I would do with only online classes.
- Why did you choose Minnesota School of Business-Rochester? Criminal justice?
I chose MSB because the location was close and the size. I didn’t want to go somewhere bigger and get lost in the mix. I was already a little intimidated starting school. It had been many years, so I wanted something small to help curb that anxiety a little. It definitely was the right fit for me at MSB-Rochester. The class sizes are great and I get help whenever I need it!
The criminal justice system has always been something I have had a great interest in. To have the chance to take some of my real-life experience and be able to apply it to a career is awesome. I believe that there are people out there who are just bad people, but I also believe that some people are not all bad, they just make bad choices. If I can work with those people and help them make those changes, while still holding them accountable for their actions, that’s what I want to be able to do.
- What has been your experience a student?
My experience as a student has been wonderful yet challenging! I enjoy my interaction with fellow students and my instructors, which I credit again to the class sizes at MSB. I feel very comfortable here as a student because there are so many non-traditional students. I don’t feel like I am the “mom” of the group. I am sitting in class with people of all ages and that helps make the transition back to school much easier—at least for me.
- What would you tell someone else trying to make the same decision?
Find that career you want—not just a job. It will be challenging, exciting and, yes, sometimes you may want to quit. But thinking about what this can do for your future—and just your sense of self—is so much more rewarding. You have to just take that chance for yourself; you deserve it! The unknown is scary, but being strong enough to face the unknown is a beautiful thing.
- What are you most proud of?
I am most proud of the fact that I graduated with my associate degree in criminal justice while maintaining a 3.5 GPA. I will be back to school working on my bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.
Want to change your life and maybe that for others? Contact MSB-Rochester at 507-536-9500 to learn how.