After taking distance courses, Juli Grady is back on campus

Juli 3Juli Grady keeps a journal where she tracks what she’s grateful for and what she hopes to accomplish. One item in particular stuck out as it stayed on her list for years.

“It’s always been a goal to finish my degree,” the Halifax native says. “I enjoyed learning but in the early 90s I was a single mom who was working full time. I just didn’t have time for everything.”

Juli continues to be busy working as a manager with Service Nova Scotia & Municipal Relations but with her youngest daughter entering high school, she finally felt it was the right time to look at completing one of her most exciting and daunting goals.

“I looked at a few different universities to make sure I found the right fit,” explains Juli. “The ability to do distance courses and carry over most of the credits I had already started made a huge difference. The Mount was willing to work with me to get my education. Some winter nights I would get home, put on dinner, slip into my pajamas and log into class. It really fit into my schedule.”

Juli started distance courses in 2010 and is currently over halfway through her Bachelor of Business Administration degree. As the goal had frequently popped up on her government objectives list as well, she felt it was a good time for the next step, taking a 14-week leave of absence to finish six courses, more than the average full time student.

“I’m so fortunate to work in a department that was willing to be flexible to help me improve myself and the quality of my work,” says Juli. “I take schooling very, very seriously now. It is my full time job; I’m on campus from nine to five to make sure I’m getting the most of my time away from the office.”

Although her department was accommodating of her desire to get back in the classroom, Juli was a bit nervous about being on campus as a mature student. These fears were quickly quelled by the small class sizes, amount of group work, and class discussion.

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“It’s a great feeling to be surrounded by young people with great ideas,” she smiles. “We’re really able to see the value in each other’s experience, and energy. We discuss cases to do with business, trust, and skills and we’re all contributing something which completes the educational process.”

A lot of things have changed since Juli was first on campus, from the technology used in the classroom to the construction of the McCain Centre, but Juli’s determination has been consistent.

“I’ve always taught my three daughters that education is key in terms of providing yourself with a good life,” Juli says. “They look at me and they see where I’ve had some challenges but I haven’t stopped.”

And Juli won’t, until she crosses that goal off her list to make room for a new one.