The Reason

By guest writer Joyce Baker
Originally published on November 13

Today is Wednesday. It’s an “Every Other Wednesday” when I get to drive from Fort Wayne to Warsaw. I am a Career Adviser or Career Coach and current Assistant Director of Career Development at Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne. The Fort Wayne campus includes our Warsaw Site and in order to serve the Warsaw students with their career development needs, I come here twice a month to hold office hours.

As sometimes happens, my first appointment was a no-show.

My second appointment arrived a little late, but no big deal. She was my Reason. She made the day, the drive, the cold, the job—worth it. I’m not going to tell you everything about her. But I will say that she plans to start school at Ivy Tech in January as a 41 year old single mom who has been through so much and is still going through so much. She wants to study Human Services and would like to be an addictions counselor.

I had her take an interests assessment—the results of which totally confirmed that she is on the right career path. The thought of attending college sounded exciting but scary. I said, “Just do the next right thing.” I told her a little about my own story and how I was a single mom at one time who relied on food stamps and government help. I told her how I got my college degree by focusing on one class at a time and by doing the next right thing.

Someday, she would like to be able to say she is an Addictions Counselor. I told her how good it feels to tell people I’m the Assistant Director of something! It feels good to recreate yourself. I told her that she has an exciting future ahead of her—that she is going to help a lot of people. She smiled and told me she believes that too.

She was sitting right there in that chair across from me, and after she left I wanted to take a picture of where she had been. She was my Reason today, and I am so grateful.

2 thoughts on “The Reason

  1. Ivy Tech is fortunate to have a person like Joyce working in this area. She loves people and cares about them and their lives.

  2. What an awesome encounter! Thanks so much for finding just the right words to make us feel as if we all shared in the experience. It sounds like you are a perfect fit for the job.

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