From Raising Her Children to Becoming a Child Therapist

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Yancy Padilla

Yancy Padilla’s academic path started differently than most of her undergraduate peers. As a mother of two young children, Yancy had big responsibilities that delayed her from starting her higher education, ultimately choosing to pursue her degree at the request of her children

Yancy searched for an academic program that would be local and affordable so that she could continue to spend time with her children, while maintaining her then-current job. With a passion for helping people, she found the social work program she was looking for at UMBC, but the commute to Baltimore was a real deterrent.

Then, Yancy discovered the Universities at Shady Grove (USG), which offered the same exact UMBC Social Work program, right in the same county where she lived and worked. She jumped at the chance to enroll in a university that not only put her on the career path she wanted, but also allowed her to balance school with work and family.

“USG helped me at my job, because the school is embedded in the community that I was working in,” said Yancy. “Plus, I took advantage of all the resources that the campus had to offer, and even recommended some of USG’s services to those that I was working with.”

For Yancy, affordability was also a major factor. She earned enough scholarships to pay for her tuition in full. “One of the big benefits of being at USG was that I had access to several different financial supports, including the seven scholarships I received from USG as well as those from the UMBC main campus,” said Yancy. “Had I not come to USG, I don’t think that I would have had the financial support I needed to get to where I am now.”

Because she chose attend UMBC at USG, Yancy was able to continue working, pursue her desired career, and complete her evening homework side-by-side with her children. She thrived in the small class size setting which provided personalized attention from professors and a close cohesion with her cohort.

“Before USG, I was a single mother raising two beautiful kids. Now, thanks to UMBC at USG, I am also the social worker that I had always wanted to be.”

Her educational experience at USG was so positive that Yancy chose not to stop with her undergraduate degree. She went on to receive her MSW from the University of Maryland School of Social Work and now works as a Transitional Trauma Therapist at The Tree House Child Advocacy Center of Montgomery County Maryland.

“It was USG that paved the way for me, and I continue to be a therapist here in the area,” says Yancy. “USG is where transformational things happen. It happened to me and it can happen to you, too.”

Find your transformation at the Universities at Shady Grove. #Powerof9

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