Earning More Than a Living

Lizetta Staplefoote and her family

Lizetta Staplefoote credits her academic and Adult Degree Program faculty advisors with guiding her to focus her mass communication studies on the booming arena of online media.

"I could tell that seeing me earn my degree and become a successful career woman was as important to them as it was to me," Staplefoote said.

She emerged from Mary Baldwin College not only with her bachelor's degree — which she put on hold for more than a decade in favor of bringing home a paycheck and starting a family — but also with renewed confidence in her abilities. Despite graduating at the height of the country's recent economic recession, Staplefoote was hired within two months as a marketing copywriter at Rackspace, a rapidly growing cloud computing company. She now works from home and is able to greet her school-age sons when they get off the bus, and — most importantly, Staplefoote contends — she is paid to do what she loves.

"I owe our standard of living, my sons' desire to go to college, and the ability to live my dreams to the personal attention of Mary Baldwin's program," she said.