Thursday, July 11, 2013

I'm Just So Grateful

I am so grateful for the mindfulness of my Heavenly Father. I know, with all my heart, that He knows me and has a plan for me. He lays the foundation for His future plans without us really noticing, and this week I have watched the pieces fall into place.

I have gone 4 years since high school graduation without taking out a student loan. Between my gracious parents my first year of school, scholarships up at USU, and working full time for a year in 2011, I had enough money to not need financial aid. This past year, I have watched my nest egg dwindle because of tuition, a huge trip across the world, and the day to day bills. I was starting to look at government student loans, because I'm always so conscious of my future, and I didn't want to graduate nursing school with $1,000 in my savings account.

I applied for scholarships at the end of spring semester, and never heard back on them. A suggestion from a very kind lady in the financial aid office last week sent me applying for scholarships again, hoping to get any leftover money the school might have. Tuesday night, I pulled two scholarship offers from the school, totaling $2,500 from the mailbox. I ripped through the letters, thrilled to see this glorious number that would cover almost all of my last two semesters of nursing school.

As I read the requirements of the scholarships, I was discouraged to find I was required to have 15 credit hours each semester to maintain the money, yet the nursing program only came to 9 credit hours each semester. I am incredibly busy outside of the 5 hours I allot to the nursing schedule every morning, and I figured there was no way I could fit 6 extra credits into my day. I walked into the nursing program director's office with my scholarships offers clutched in my hand. I explained to her my predicament, and she pulled out a huge manual to help me out. She pulled out one 3 credit hour class that would only require about 1 hour of my attention every week. With 3 credits down and 3 to go, she asked me if I was working as a nurse.

I excitedly answered that yes, I was working night clinic at a family practice office in town. She smiled and told me I could get college credit for working as a nurse, with no required class time. The requirement was 150 hours over 16 weeks of the semester, and I pulled out my calculator to figure if I worked enough to meet that requirement. I was about 5 hours short each week, and she could see I was stressed out. I started mumbling about how I could possibly attempt to pick up more hours each week, and she cut in with a better option. She changed the class requirements around, added a paper to the curriculum and said I would be just fine.

Because of a job that I felt very compelled to apply for back in April and was hired for in May, I am getting 3 more credits this semester without adding any class time to my schedule. I am keeping my scholarship because of this job that was such a miracle a few months ago. Heavenly Father, without a doubt, guided me to apply, helped me during the interview, and put me in the best position to be hired at that clinic. It's amazing to me, when I really think about it. He put the foundation in place for me, without me really realizing the work He was accomplishing for me.

I am so grateful to have this scholarship, because it guarantees a bit of financial stability after graduation, and I will only have to pay a small amount every semester on my own. I can continue to be debt free (besides my car) and not pester my parents for money. I am so grateful to be in nursing school at a place where living is affordable, and the program is excellent quality.

I'm just so grateful for where I am in life, I know Heavenly Father is guiding my steps.

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