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Renewed Hope

Class of ’03
General Studies
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
I moved to Salt Lake City seven years ago to begin my education at LDS Business College. At that point in my life I felt like I had no direction. I had a very poor academic history, and therefore was unable to attend the schools I had planned on attending. Because of my poor choices, my options were very limited. Through a friend, I learned about LDS Business College in Salt Lake City and decided that it might be a good start for me. I had little information about the school, and I certainly had no idea of the impact or opportunities that the business college would provide for me. I decided I would give it a try and I moved from Canada.
My first semester was hard. I was not a good student. I had a hard time making friends. I had no academic goals for myself and expected very little of myself. I was struggling with broken family relationships and needed motivation for a fresh start. Little did I know that all of the things that I was longing for and wanting in my life were beginning to unfold for me.
The classes at the College are small and intimate, something that was so beneficial for me.  I felt like my professors were investing themselves in my success – they had the time and were willing to sit down with me and mentor me.  I felt like I was cared about, and that I was being cheered on.  During my first semester I received straight A’s – something I had never done before. I felt invigorated – I felt for the first time that I was succeeding.
The smaller class sizes also helped me connect with other students.  I found that many of my classmates came from very diverse backgrounds, from many countries around the world, and some from very unfortunate situations.   I started to better understand the true purpose of the business college – “to lift the hands that hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees” – which is to provide an environment that fosters hope, increases confidence and breeds success. (D&C 81:5)
With the increased confidence and ability that I gained during my first year, I felt the desire to contribute to the mission of the school.  I ran for Vice President of Finance and joined the Student Council during my second year so I could give back, in part, some of what had been given to me.
During my second year at the College, a donor was willing to match donations made by students at 3 to 1.The administration approached me to head a committee and create a campaign to increase student awareness. We created the Charitable Giving Committee and the campaign, “Learn to Live, Start to Give.”  I became impassioned! I wanted to help provide others with scholarships so they would have the same opportunities that I had at the College. I wanted the students to learn to give with an open heart.
I still can hardly believe the experiences I had at the College. I had the opportunity to speak to students at devotionals, learn great leadership skills, plan and carry out fundraising activities, host a donor appreciation dinner, form a committee to reach out to the students, and present an overview of our efforts to the donor. Our efforts were met with surprising success. Not only did we reach our fundraising goal, but we far surpassed it.
With all of these experiences, my personal growth and development at the College grew more than I even knew possible. These experiences were the springboard for continued growth. I transferred to Brigham Young University with a full tuition academic scholarship, graduating in 2006. I interned for a local non-profit organization where I was able to use some of the fundraising skills I gained at the College. The skills that I learned through the time I spent at LDS Business College are skills that I still use - even though my primary roles have now changed to wife and mother. The College offered me a stepladder to a solid and successful future.