Recently we sat down to talk with two of our Academic Advisors about the Linfield experience. As soon as someone applies for admission to the Linfield College Adult Degree Program they are assigned an advisor who will guide them through the admission and enrollment process. Advisors will also continue to advise students all the way through graduation from Linfield. Here, our two advisors, Joanne Swenson and Janielle Losaw, discuss the whys and hows of becoming a Linfield College student and how earning your degree at Linfield is not as complicated as it might seem at first. That is, if you take a deep breath and proceed one step at a time.
I think there are two main reasons people come back to get their degree, professional and personal.
Some of the reasons students come back to finish their degrees at Linfield College are necessary job requirements. They are looking for advancement in their careers or they might be looking to change careers.
Many registered nurses are now required to get a bachelor’s degree in some hospitals, so they come to me saying how do I get my bachelor’s degree, how can I advance in my skills, how can I advance in my job?
As soon as somebody applies for admission, they’re assigned an Academic Advisor and from that point on we’re able to assist them in the whole process of applying for admission, of choosing classes, figuring out where they are in the whole admission and enrollment process.
There are three main things that I work on with students right away at the beginning. One is to calm their fears about how their credits will transfer. Two is how are they going to pay for this. There’s financial aid, student loans, scholarships; we walk them through that process. And third, how am I going to manage life as a student?
One of the really important roles that we play as Academic Advisors is helping prospective students to figure out what sort of credits might
transfer from the work that they did before at another college or university. We’re always able to do a preliminary evaluation of their transcripts to help them figure out how many credits you should anticipate to transfer, and how much longer it will take you to complete your degree. I think that gives prospective students a lot of information ahead of time to help them decide even if they want to apply for admission.
I think that when people first start thinking about going back to school, they sometimes psych themselves out a little bit and think that it’s going to be much more complicated than it really is. In reality, once we go through the steps and work with them, they figure out that it’s not as daunting as they thought it was going to be.
I think students choose Linfield because we have an excellent reputation and they have talked with colleagues who have gone through the RN to BSN program and they know that they can get through this program. They know that they’ll have excellent customer service, academic advising, student services, and they know that we will work with them to make this program adaptable to their lifestyle.
I think that students really are able to see themselves as a Linfield student from the get-go because they have a personal connection with an advisor who is there for them from day one, someone who can help them through all the steps. I definitely think that is the strength of our program and a main reason why people feel like this is the right place for them.