About vgarrison

Director of Retention Services Belhaven University Office: Chattanooga Campus

SPRING… a time of renewal

 

 

Spring is a time of renewal. The earth is being renewed after the cold of winter. The temperatures are warmer, and the colors of the budding and blooming flowers, trees, and other plants are beautiful to see after the dullness of the winter landscape.

Renewal.

Becoming new again.

Refreshing what was tired and weary.

I love spring because of the promise it brings of brighter days and replenished energy. I don’t know about you, but it has been a long winter for me. I am ready for the newness of the seasonal change.

If you are one of our adult students, I’m sure you need encouragement for the journey you are on. It sometimes seems like a long road. I also know that feeling. I was an adult student myself as a single parent and know the struggles of trying to balance family, job, school, church, etc.  I also know the satisfaction of completing the goals I set for myself.

As you consider where you are on your road, remember why you started this journey. What were the reasons you wanted to complete your degree? Take a deep breath. You are doing it! Look ahead and see the finish line is up ahead.

Are you weary? Have you asked God to refresh you? He will give you the strength and focus you need to continue. Just ask Him. Don’t look back. Look up and in front of you! Your goal is within reach if you don’t give up.

God bless you as you move forward, my friends.                 

Want Success? Don’t Give Up!

SUCCESS.

Don’t we all want it? What does it take to succeed? Many people have tried and failed NUMEROUS times before they finally achieved success. What was their secret?

Thomas Edison: “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”  

Winston Churchill:  “Never… never… never give up!”

Charlie Brown also gives us that very same advice: Never give up

Where are YOU in your journey to achieve your educational goals? Have you tried to get there before but just never were able to finish?  Are you right in the middle or near the end of your program? The past is where you learned the lesson. The future is where you apply the lesson. Don’t give up in the middle.

How are you feeling right now? Motivated? Tired? Excited? Determined? Discouraged? Your Belhaven faculty and staff are here to help you succeed! Let’s talk about it! We want to encourage you and see you reach your goal because OUR goal is YOUR success!


Be confident. Trust God every step of the way. He will give you the strength you need to complete your journey!

God will finish

“He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it.” (Phil.1:6) 

   

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Keep Your Chin Up

 

Spring-Is-Sure-To-Follow

SPRING! It’s a new season. Beautiful colors are coming back into the landscape. Trees have green leaves again, and flowers are blooming. Soon the grass will need mowing again.   grass_border_3    Oh, maybe you didn’t want to be reminded of that!

Has it been a long winter for you? Have you faced more obstacles than opportunities lately? Are you tired? Is it hard to keep going to class and to complete your assignments each week?

Take a deep breath and remember why you are on this journey. You are in school to reach an educational goal you have set for yourself. You and many other students can get discouraged during the challenging times. Remind yourself of the reward at the end of the race.

Keep your focus on the finish line! diploma

KEEP YOUR CHIN UP!

“Let your eyes look directly ahead and

let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you.”

Proverbs 4:25-26

Keep Your Chin Up

How are you doing this term?

How are you doing this term? Are you doing just fine, or are you feeling overloaded? Are you taking difficult courses right now and wonder how you will get through them? As adults, we all have so many things on our plates! There is so much to juggle: family, work, church, school, and more… you name it. We can all get overwhelmed at times.

Are you physically stressed? Mentally? Spiritually? When you experience any of these things, it is good to take a deep breath, slow down, and remember WHY you began this journey of continuing your education. Was it for your family, to make a better life for them or to serve as a role model for your children about the importance of education? Do you need the degree you’re working on to get promoted or to go into another field of work? Do you just want to finish what you once started, or is there something else that convicted you that you needed to return to school?

Whatever the reason was for you to come to Belhaven University as an adult student, you need to keep that reason always in your mind when you get weary or discouraged. You have set a good goal for yourself, but sometimes you may feel you are not able to reach that goal. Let me encourage you to ask God for the wisdom, strength, and perseverance you need as you continue on your journey!

 You are not alone, and He is able!

God is with youGod is able

 

How’s it going? Smoothly or not?

Virginia M. Garrison, M.Ed., Director of Retention Services

 

This month the spring semester is coming to an end, and summer is quickly approaching. How are you doing in your courses? Are things running smoothly for you with no interruptions or disappointments? Are you laughing at that thought? If you are like most of us adults, there is always something happening that we didn’t expect! That’s part of life!

The important thing to remember is that no matter what happens, we need to keep focused on our goals in order to succeed. There may be setbacks along the way, but be encouraged. This too shall pass… hang in there. Remember why you began this journey! It doesn’t matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop! Keep moving forward toward earning your degree. It is an investment in your future.

At Belhaven University, we understand that many adult students have situations to arise that may discourage them. We want to assure you that you are not alone! There have been many others who have been concerned about being successful in school while working, raising a family, and handling many other responsibilities and the unexpected interruptions of life… and they have succeeded! We have thousands of adult graduates to prove it!

Our faculty and staff members on each of our campuses are here to help you. We will work with you through every step of the process from entrance all the way to graduation! If something happens that seems like a roadblock, talk to us. You are not alone, and you don’t need to be afraid of the unexpected.

As a Christian institution, we also believe that the Lord will be with you on your educational journey if you believe in Him, depend on Him, and lean on Him. He has promised to be with you, no matter what your circumstances are. Trust Him to help you!

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.  Isaiah 43:2

I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me.  Phil. 4:13

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.  Isaiah 40:31

 

 

 

 

Thanksgiving Blessings

Virginia Garrison

Director of Retention Services

Thanksgiving Blessings

When you count your blessings at this Thanksgiving time of the year, can you include your college degree as one of them? Is that something that is missing in your life? Is it holding you back from the successful career you would like to have? Is it something you started but never finished?

 

At Belhaven University, we offer many programs for adults who want to add a degree to their resumé. Not only is an education at Belhaven an academic accomplishment, but it is also a journey of Christian spiritual growth for many students. Our instructors are all Christians, and our curriculum is taught from a Biblical perspective. So a degree from BU is a double blessing!

 

What are you waiting for? Don’t wait any longer. Get started now! Then next Thanksgiving you can add an “in-progress” blessing to you list!

 

 

What Are Your Gifts?

Adult Studies Blog: September 2014

WHAT ARE YOUR GIFTS?

Virginia Garrison, Director of Retention Services

 

We all have gifts… things we are good at doing… or that we have the potential to do well but haven’t fully developed. What are your gifts? Do they need development?

Do you like to work with people? Are you good at organizing? Maybe you have the gift of administration.

Are you compassionate? Do you like to help and encourage others? Maybe you have the gift of mercy and service.

Are you a “take charge” type of person? Are you good at communicating? Maybe you have the gift of leadership.

Are you good at explaining things to others and enjoy seeing them learn? Maybe you have the gift of teaching.

Do you involve yourself in ministry? Would you like to use that gift to its fullest?

There are too many possibilities to list in this short message. Whatever your gifts may be, wouldn’t you like to develop them further? Wouldn’t you like to use them to the best of your ability? Completing your degree could help you do that! Belhaven University offers many options, including business management, social services, health administration, leadership, Christian ministry, Biblical studies, teacher education, etc.

Why not give yourself the “gift” of education and reach your full potential? In doing so, you will also be helping others who will benefit from receiving what you have to give!

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.

1 Peter 4:10

Belhaven University Verse of the Year 2014-2015

CAN’T TEACH AN OLD DOG?

Do you think you’re too old to start something new?

Do you think college is only for the young?

If so…you are wrong!

One of our proudest graduates last year on the Chattanooga campus was 75 years old and an honor student! In our adult programs at Belhaven, our students range in age from 21 to 75! The average age of our adult students is in the 30s.

A friend once said to me, “I’m too old to go back to school for two years. Why, I would be 44 year old when I finish!”

My response to her was, “And how old will you be if you don’t???”

No matter your age, there will be other students like you in our classes.

What are you waiting for? You’re never to old to learn!

 

 

Season for Change?

September is a month of transition…the hot days of summer begin to cool down…the colors of nature begin to change to a new and vibrant palette…fall is in the air…and the season of autumn officially arrives on September 22.

Transition…change…transformation…can be a wonderful thing! Is it time for a transition in your life? Do you want to make a positive change for yourself and for those around you? What if you were to be transformed into a person with more confidence, more knowledge, more understanding? Would that change your life?

I’ve been working in adult education for over 20 years, with Covenant College and now Belhaven University. I have seen hundreds of transformations during those years…people who literally changed their lives by adding Christian education and earning a degree to their life experience. Here are a few examples of amazing transformations I have witnessed:

  • The young man who was the first in his family to earn a college degree and was then able to fulfill his dream of a professional position helping children of divorce
  • Single moms who were able to get better jobs to support themselves and their children
  • Employees who had been passed over for promotions because they didn’t have a degree and who received promotions and raises after finishing their degrees…some even before finishing
  • The dad whose children were in high school, and he wanted to finish his college degree before they did, and he succeeded
  • The woman who had a dream and started her own business when she finished her degree
  • Parents who wanted to be role models for their children and show them the value of education
  • The 75-year-old woman who wanted to complete what she started many years ago and graduated last May…you’re never too old!
  • Veterans and current military students, some getting higher ranks with their degrees
  • People dissatisfied with their jobs, wanting to change careers, and doing so with a degree
  • Dads and moms wanting better lives for their families
  • The student who was extremely afraid of public speaking when she began classes but gained confidence and became a public relations spokesperson for a large corporation after graduation
  • Students who had tremendous growth in their faith, some totally amazing!
  • And the list could go on and on…

Are you like any of them, or do you have your own special situation? Do you want change in your life? Would you like to be transformed? Belhaven University is an institution where you can discover your place, your purpose.

To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven.    (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

Is this your season for change?