Rio Salado afforded me the oportunity as a single mother of three to complete my goal of earning a college degree. I knew that the only way I was going to be able to improve my life and the lives of my three boys was through education. Rio provided me with the tools and success I needed and built my self confidence so high that upon earning my degree from Rio, I immediately enrolled in courses at NAU. In December 2007, I graduated from NAU with a BAS in Early Childhood Education, while putting my education to work in my new career at a local nonprofit who serves the early childhood community. I was on a roll and ready to show my boys the importance of higher education and continued on with my education to be the first person in my family to ever recieve a Masters Degree. After graduating with high distictions just a year and a half later in May 2009, I assisted my employer in writing a grant that would add a new program to our agency. Our agency was awarded the $7.5million grant of which I now direct. This grant focuses on providing early childhood providers with the opportunity to go to college to earn a college degree. Ironically my life has gone from graduating from Rio to providing others with the opportunity to attend and graduate from Rio or one of the many other community colleges throughout the state. Without the professionalism and support of the Rio team I never would have had the motivation, drive or confidence to complete my Associates Degree let alone continue forward to my Masters Degree. I am grateful everyday for the education I have recieved and new life my boys and I have because of it! I put my education to work everyday to assist others advance in thier careers and life.