Monday, May 20, 2019
The majority of your first semester is figuring out how this new thing called "school" is going to some how be placed into the busyness of your life. Your first week is filled with excitement and by the end of the week, you wonder how in the world you're going to complete every assignment. It's normal to have these feelings and you need to give yourself some grace. But know you will succeed, and it gets easier. It's going to take a few weeks, maybe even a month to find what works for you: where will you do your homework, what time of day, whether weekends are rest or for playing catch up.
In the midst of it all, remember that there are tens of thousands of other students who have already been through their 1st semester and made it through. You can find them on Yammer and in our Facebook group, and today, you can find a few right here in this blog:
When I began in January of 2018, I was incredibly nervous as well. I hadn't been in school for 15 years and I was very nervous about the learning curve. I held on to those nerves, and I am now set to graduate in three weeks with a 3.96. My tips are to let your nerves propel you to never being late with an assignment, completing all assignments, learning to read efficiently (I never read a book word for word, I summarize main points and translate them into my own words). Just believe in yourself and you will crush it! Good luck to you through your journey with Liberty. It can be life-altering if you fully engage in it.
Here is my tip of the day: Many students who will start at Liberty will be students who have been absent from school for many years. Okay... you're feeling a little bit intimidated right? Liberty’s online format makes it easy to learn. E-books are easy and you can set how many courses you're going to take. If I could tell you one thing: Don’t be afraid. Just take your time. Start with UNIV104. It will show you what to expect and how to navigate Blackboard. Liberty’s Academic Advisors are a great source for course info. Don’t try taking a full load the first semester. Remember why you're here.
When I started in January, I was afraid there would be a huge learning curve and I'd mess up! If I can do it, you can do it. Watch the Blackboard online tutorials... it really helps, and download the app on your phone. The app is super easy to navigate and I use it a lot. I use Blackboard on my computer to do assignments and tests. One other tip: when you're doing your discussion board posts, do them first in Microsoft Word, then put them through Grammarly to check for any errors. After that, copy and paste into your thread in Blackboard. Be sure to cite all your work, even in discussion board posts. You will be fine. I'm 51, so it's all been new to me too!
Time Management is vital. I thought I was too busy to be a mom, a wife and a student, but once I sat down and made a schedule of everything I did in a day I found a lot of wasted time. My first semester was crazy with trying to get everything done. I was staying up late to study and working on school work all weekend. Once I learned good time management skills I was able to get all my school work done in a few hours a day three to four days a week and have my weekends free.
For more encouragement, relatability, and tips for online students, join a Yammer group by degree program, location, stage of life, and more! www.liberty.edu/yammerPosted at 12:29 PM | Comments (0) | Permalink
Monday, May 20, 2019
Kylie Hoffman is a 21 year-old graduate of Liberty University Online. She is graduating with her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology: Criminal Psychology.
Being a first-generation college student, the thought of attending a university seemed like a dream that was always out of reach. Further complicating my college dream was the challenge of being married to a soldier in the U.S. Army. I was in a unique situation as an army wife, transering from an on-campus atmosphere to a fully online program at Liberty and moving to North Carolina from Washington state. While the obstacles were stacked against me, with God and my family by my side, I not only was able to attend college but be on the verge of graduating with my bachelor’s in Psychology: Criminal Psychology with the honor of Summa Cum Laude.
While I was grateful to have found LUO, I was skeptical on how attending an online university would compare to a campus in regards to retaining the information and making friends. I was reassured when I began taking my first courses and discovered how in-depth each class was. Each professor was not going to let a lack of a physical classroom get in the way of giving students the proper learning experience. However, I found the social aspect to be lacking, which was probably the hardest part about being a student of LUO. I then found the website “Yammer” that allowed me to communicate with fellow students and be a part of the Liberty community.
To someone just starting out their degree, I encourage you to understand that this is not going to be easy. Chances are, you are attending an online university because your situation is not perfect, but that’s okay. Your journey is going to be hard, beautiful, unique, and one that you will not want to miss for the world. There will be tough times and there will be times when you are not sure if it is worth it to keep going. But I am here to tell you that it is. Persevering and completing your degree is something that no one can take away from you and an accomplishment you will cherish for the rest of your life.Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 12:29 PM | Comments (0) | Permalink
Monday, April 15, 2019
Ashley Grubb lives in Iowa, and in her free time, she reads, participates in 5K races for various charities or organizations, and spends time with her three dogs and mother. Her family's support helps during the tough times.
I am 32 years old and made the decision that I will get older no matter what--I can get older doing what I'm doing now, or I can get older while finishing my education.
My first semester with Liberty University was in July of 2018. I took two classes, and I thought I could manage them just fine. However, I felt rushed in the readings and had a hard time keeping up with the homework. Having to read three chapters out of two books and make sure that you can get the discussions done or paper done in time was very stressful. I managed, but I honestly say that it was all because of God. I went one more semester with two classes until I understood that I could take one course at a time as a doctoral student.
I feel like God has helped keep me going and has helped me as far as I am. I think that as long as you focus on God and pray as you continue your education that God will bless you and help you though the difficult times.
For future new students my best suggestion would include the following:
Homework will always want to pull you away from family or friends, but never use the excuse that you can’t pray or spend time with God because of school. He is the reason why you are here--to earn an education in which you can use to reach others who may not know God. Lastly, be aware that God may put you in one direction and turn you to another direction. He is putting you there for a reason. Best of luck.Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 2:24 PM | Comments (0) | Permalink
Monday, April 1, 2019
Monday, April 1, 2019
By Shericka Cullin, LUO Student studying Bachelor of Science in Psychology
Heavenly Father! I just thank you for who you are.
Postedby Jaclyn Blackford
at 1:16 PM |
Comments (1) | Permalink
For my classmates, my brothers and sisters… Father, I pray that your glory falls fresh on them today, draw out every fear, every bit of anxiety and any thought or plan that would cause them to be distracted or even deterred from what you have already declared perfect on their life. For your word says that Your grace is sufficient and Your strength is made perfect in weakness.
Many in this season feel burnt out, overwhelmed, beyond tired, frustrated, maxed out, ready to give up, asking why and probably have never cried as much in any other season of their life. But Father, today, we take captive those thoughts of negativity and align them with your will and for those who do not know how to take captive their thoughts and align them accordingly, teach them Father. Holy Spirit, intercede!
It is ok to acknowledge weaknesses, because God is our ever-perfect & ever-present help. Father, I thank you for the power and the authority to speak against tactics (plans, plots, maneuvers, schemes, deception, trickery) of any kind from the enemy. Your work is finished Father – we are more than conquers because you love us and on that we will stand.
Heavenly Father you are amazingly awesome, and I thank you! In Jesus name Amen.
Thursday, March 21, 2019
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Equan Hotson is from Virginia Beach, VA and has been serving as an active duty Marine for the last six plus years. He is pursing a Bachelors in Business Administration with a Concentration in Human Resources.
Liberty has taught me to be patient and have faith. For the last few years I have been contemplating my calling. Daily, I would find myself asking the question, what am I here for? Even as a Marine, I felt as if God had a higher calling for me. As most 24 year olds, I wanted to rush and figure all of Gods plans out overnight, until I was faced with adversity--ending in me quitting and searching for a new path.
Once I transferred into Liberty, I was welcomed by a staff that takes an interest in the person on the other side of the computer. Every interaction with my professors validated my choice to pursue business at Liberty. Learning became fun, and the puzzle of my future placed it self together. I could let go of the stress of figuring life out and enjoy the experience. I learned patience.
There were assignments that I struggled with more than others, but with a simple email and the occasional prayer, I found my way through. Slowly, the walls began to become speed bumps, and eventually, I found my way towards completing another course, earning a successful grade. This brought me closer to God and more comfortable with where I am in life.
God does not place an obstacle in our way without providing the strength to endure. Pursuing a degree will not be easy. There are going to be late nights, pondering how you can better your grades. Accompanied by numerous hours dedicated towards finding more references for your next discussion board. The memories you have about math from years ago are going to try and break you. When you believe you are beat, understand you are exactly where you need to be. You are undergoing an uncomfortable, temporary event--an event that is going to blossom into permanent results. You can and will succeed.
Jeremiah 29:11 (KJV)
“ For I know the plans I have for you, this is the Lords declaration, plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
I am slowly realizing that in life, it is never too late. God, in fact, does have a plan for each one of us. Liberty University is indeed, making champions of Christ. We just need to be patient and have faith!Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 11:44 AM | Comments (1) | Permalink
Friday, March 1, 2019
Courtney O'Donnell is an online student in the Family and Marriage Therapy Master's degree. She was saved at age 26 and accepted the Lord into her heart. She served in the Marine Corps for four years. She has an associate's degree and two undergraduate degrees - one in Leadership and one in Human Resources. She loves animals, horseback riding, art, and writing.
My story is quite extensive, but really it is His story. I started college right out of high school, went for two years in different programs, then decided to join the Marine Corps. I didn’t know what I wanted. I served four years and I enjoyed it. I started college back up while I was still active duty and received my associate degree.
I underwent a divorce and and felt lost but that is where I met the Lord. I was saved at age 26. At that point, I was working on my second bachelor’s degree, graduated, and then pursued a career at a therapeutic wilderness camp for girls. I served two years loving on broken hearts like mine at Camp Duncan in Aberdeen, North Carolina. God used that experience to shape and mold me into who I am becoming for Him.
I love that I can share my faith with my professors and fellow students and that we are always trying to encourage each other with scripture and God's love. We truly are a Christian community, not just a Christian university. Sometimes I feel like I miss out on face-to-face interaction because I am all online, but I have enjoyed video blog assignments and videos made by professors to help the learning experience.
I would say to someone just starting their degree, “don’t give up”. It doesn’t get easier, you get stronger. It is also never too late to be going back to school. I admire people who don’t let age play a factor in furthering their education. There are so many opportunities; let us not limit God in that way. Also, enjoy the journey… we need not rush to the destination and miss out on lessons along the way.Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 9:16 AM | Comments (2) | Permalink
Tuesday, February 26, 2019
Carla Hester is pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Accounting. She is a mom, online student, and has a lot of wisdom and encouragement from personal experience:
Registering for classes online at Liberty University was an easy decision. The school has an excellent reputation, their process was fast and easy, and all roadblocks I encountered during the process were cleared up with their helpful and friendly staff. My excitement at finally finishing my Bachelor’s degree was immense. I had taken online classes through our local community college many years ago when I worked toward my Associate’s Degree, so I didn’t anticipate any problems going in.
After classes finally started, however, I quickly became overwhelmed. I was taking classes that followed up on information I hadn’t seen in a long time, so I was in tears often over all the knowledge I had lost and the amount of work I was trying to juggle at home, too.
I had a few things that kept me motivated and moving forward, and I chose to focus on those and put in as much time and work as I could to finishing my classes. One, I came to the realization that it would take a lot of time and effort. I came in with the expectation that it would be a fun and easy addition to an already stressful life. Shifting my understanding and perspective on how much work it was going to be helped me not be tied in knots over what was expected of me. I accepted that and pushed forward. Second, graduation! I pictured myself walking across the stage in cap and gown and savored that thought. If I give up, I will never have that day. I will never have my degree to frame and hang in my office one day. So, I motivate myself with the end goal. Also, I realized that my two girls see me working hard at school, wanting to quit, but not quitting. They have their own struggles with school, and I want to show them what finishing and the good feeling of completion look like.
And finally, the thing that has gotten me through has been the encouragement and support on the online forums in Blackboard. There have been just a few times when my heart just couldn’t take it all and I reached out to other students online. Their words and prayers lifted me up and encouraged me to go another day. And those prayers really do help. Don’t ever be afraid to reach out say you need help. You’re not alone, and you CAN DO THIS!!Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 12:49 PM | Comments (0) | Permalink
Monday, February 18, 2019
Jason Myers is a new student at Liberty University. He is an Eagle Scout, a former Air Force Airman, and has worked for 21 years as a military contractor on small Pacific islands. He is pursuing a degree in Religion, Apologetics in order to gain a closer relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Are you feeling down? Maybe you feel devastated and hopeless. Don’t give up, because it does get better. I’ve been in really low places myself. I’ve been in places I thought I would never get out of. I thought there was no way it could ever get better. Here is the trick to it. You have to realize that no matter how bad it is, you will never get over it. You don’t want to. Whatever it is will help strengthen you and help you grow. You don’t get over it. You overcome it. All of our struggles make us stronger, but they remain a part of who we are.
Are you facing a death in the family? I’ve lost both of my parents in a short period of time. It was devastating. But the truth is, we all die. Why? Because life here on Earth is just step 1. We all wait our turn to live with Christ in everlasting paradise. We each take our turn through the turn-style of death to visit the Lord. We miss those who have departed us, but they probably can’t wait for us to join them! They have seen what we haven’t seen yet.
Problems and sorrow come in all shapes and sizes. Money is a big source of problems. I once lived in poverty. I was lucky to have a package of peanut butter crackers for dinner. I lived in a beat up trailer. A hair dryer under my blankets was my only source of heat in the winter. Eventually I grew tired of being poor, so I quit! That’s right, just like anything I didn’t want to do, I quit being poor! I got three minimum wage jobs. I worked almost every waking hour of the day. I wasn’t home much, but when I was, I was eating steak, not crackers! Eventually my work experience enabled me to find a single job that paid as much in 40 as my other jobs paid for 100. That led to other jobs. Now I am doing very well. What it took was deciding to quit being poor and putting in the effort to make it happen.
Whatever is bringing you down, you will overcome it. Two things can make it better: time and effort. Some problems just require time for you to sort them out mentally, while others just require effort. Either way, in the long run you will be okay. You will be better than okay. You will be marvelous!
I will pray for the strength of everyone at Liberty University. May we all pass on the lessons we learn from our struggles in order to help and comfort others through theirs! God bless you all!Postedby Jaclyn Blackford at 10:00 AM | Comments (1) | Permalink