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Administrative Clerk and Department AssistantBrookhaven College
“My life hasn’t been a pretty sight. I’m a single parent of four, and for a while there I was at rock bottom — I was even homeless for two years. I didn’t think I could do anything, but now I tell anybody that if you put your mind to it, you can pretty much do anything. I thought there was no way out of my situation, but there was; you just can’t ever give up. You have to get up and dust yourself off and get back on that horse again.
“I was living with my cousin and one day I just said, ‘I’m going to go enroll myself in college.’ I caught the bus to Brookhaven and got accepted and enrolled that day. I never thought it would be so easy to get into college.
“Ever since I was a little girl, I liked to play office and pretend I was typing. One of the best things about going to college is that I finally learned to type!
“Pat Byars is just a down-home lady and she goes out of her way for everyone; she’ll just bend over backwards for you. Sharon Burton wants you to succeed too, and she makes you work for it. Then you’ve got a level of understanding that you can feel confident about and respect yourself for.
“Where would I like to be in a few years? I’d like to be sitting behind a desk and working, be out there in the business world. I see myself making things work for people and getting the job done right. I love helping people; that’s my passion.
“My experience has been so wonderful — the teachers are so good in the way they help us students. They’ve given me the opportunity of a lifetime. I just needed an opportunity, a door to knock on, and then I was off and running with it. My kids are so proud of me; they can’t believe what a big turnaround I’ve done. I’m on the education train now, and you can’t get me off of it.”
Chan Anderson works part time as an administrative clerk in Brookhaven College’s S Building, helping students to register for classes, and part time as a department assistant I for BOSS faculty Sharon Burton and Pat Byars, a total of 20 hours a week. She has earned the BOSS Office Assistant certificate at Brookhaven and is working on a second certificate, Software Application Specialist, as well as an associate degree in Business Administration.