Linda Mullen and son Jacob
I’ll never forget where I was when I learned of the Women with Children program at Misericordia University. I was at my full-time job and one of the girls I worked with was a Misericordia student. We were talking about all of the trials and tribulations that go along with being a college student when she said that Misericordia had a program specifically for women and their children. I couldn’t believe my ears. I grilled her for specifics but all she knew was that there was a dorm and moms lived there with their kids. As soon as I got home, I started doing my research.
I was working full-time at Bed Bath & Beyond while attending the local community college part-time at night. My son, Jacob, was 4 years old at the time. I spent most days feeling guilty about how much time I spent away from him. I applied immediately to the Women with Children Program even though I wasn’t going to graduate from the community college for another two years.
I started Misericordia in the fall of 2005 and moved into Rosary Hall (A Women with Children Residence) in February 2006. I believe that starting at Misericordia University before being a part of the Women with Children program gave me an added appreciation for all of the benefits the program offers. Oftentimes when people ask me what the greatest benefit of being a participant in the Women with Children program is, they are expecting me to say something that has to do with money whether it be the free housing, scholarships, etc. While the financial benefits are very important, the greatest benefit I got from being a Women with Children participant was the ability to be a true college student. I was able to act as the judicial coordinator for student government, hold officer positions in five different clubs, and participate in all the things on campus that make college what it is while still being a mom. Jacob was always welcomed on campus and often attended meetings with me as part of the group.
The relationships that Jacob and I formed will last a lifetime and the Women with Children program made that possible for us. As we move into the next chapter of our lives, we are very excited about what lies ahead and yet very sad to be leaving our “home”.