Robyn Schwecke, 35, is a mother of two daughters, a wildland wildfire team member for the U.S. Forest Service, and the winner of a GetEducated.com $1,000 Excellence in Online Education Scholarship. Schwecke will use the free college grant toward her online Bachelors in Management at Park University.
As the first woman on either side of her family to achieve a post-secondary degree, Schwecke is determined to make the most of her education. She currently holds two Associate degrees from Montana State University-Great Falls College of Technology, and now focuses her bachelors degree in the fields of accounting and entrepreneurship to prepare for a career in Fire Management.
"I have worked on a Type II Fire Management Team in the finance and plans sections over the last five summers and see myself being capable of starting a successful heavy equipment rental business to be able to stay mainstreamed with the firefighting world," says Schwecke.
Having been remarried while raising two daughters—now sixteen and ten years old—Schwecke says she has a "good support system" from her family. They have helped her excel in her online courses and motivated her to become actively involved in the community. Schwecke is the Treasurer for the Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) at her daughter's school, a coach for the girls' softball team, and a volunteer at the Eagle Mountain Special Olympics.
Schwecke's decision to attend Park University for her bachelors was based on the option to take hybrid courses. She takes 85% of her classes on-campus and most of her electives/prerequisites online. Schwecke explains, "I just can't say enough good things about Park University. The faculty are always there to help and the 8-week accelerated program works perfectly for me."
With so many kids dropping out of school, Schwecke is proud of her oldest daughter for doing extremely well in her classes. Schwecke's second-born was diagnosed with Down Syndrome, and as a special needs child, she receives a lot of attention from her family.
Schwecke says, "Both of my girls have been such huge inspirations in my life. My oldest has always carried a 4.0 GPA and is a volunteer in so many community activities. She shows me what being a decent hard working person is all about."
She continues, "My youngest, which has Down syndrome, has shown me what compassion and true love is all about. She is so kind and loving to everyone she meets. She sees the good in everyone and always has a smile to share. I want to make sure that I can give back to not only my daughters but to my community the same way that both of them have given."
Now a junior at Park University, Schwecke is preparing for the CPA exam, to secure her status as a Certified Public Accountant. She believes her online training will provide her with the tools to make her entrepreneurial business a success.
GetEducated.com offers free college scholarships and grants to online students bi-annually in the spring and fall. The deadlines for these distance learning scholarships are March 15 and October 15.
Online College Scholarship Resources