Meet current scholarship recipient Alyssa Dye and her 3-year-old son Andrew. Alyssa is majoring in business at the University of Arkansas. We asked Alyssa to tell us about her time as an SPSF NWA Scholar.

What made you decide to go back to school/go to school for the first time?
I knew if I wanted to get ahead in life and have a good paying job, I needed to continue my education. So, I lazily took some classes while working full time. Then I got pregnant with my son and all of that changed. I knew I needed to really buckle down and get my life together since I was going to have someone else to depend on me.

How did you choose your major?
I am a state registered real estate appraiser. However, I chose to major in business because I figured that between the two, I could find a good, well-paying career to support my son and me.

What do you enjoy most about being a parent?
I enjoy everything about being a parent. I know its cliché, but I love the good, the bad, and the ugly! Even during our biggest battles, when I just want to pull my hair out, I wouldn’t give them up for anything.

What does Andrew want to be when he grows up?
Andrew said he wants to be a bird…he is only 3 after all!

What has been your favorite parenting moment thus far?
When he asks to snuggle with me, so we can read together. It makes my heart melt every time.

How will life be different for you and your son after you graduate?
Our lives will change significantly after I graduate. I will finally have the time to find a career and not have to work multiple odd jobs just to make ends meet. I will also be able to come home after work and just be a mom and be able to spend more quality time with my son instead of spending my free time studying or doing homework. I think that is what I’m looking forward to the most.

What are your words to live by or your favorite quote?
“Do not ever quit out of fear of rejection.”—J.K. Rowling

What has been your biggest challenge?
I have had many challenges on my quest for a higher education. One of my biggest challenges has been trying to study and take tests when my young son is always with me.

Other than financially, what impact has SPSF NWA made on your life?
SPSF NWA has made a huge difference in our lives. The emotional support, words of encouragement on top of opportunities to meet with people in our chosen career fields so that we can make a more informed decision on what we want to do with our lives and the networking opportunities they provide are exceptional. The staff, donors, alumni, and recipients all become a team with one goal in mind, to help you succeed. It is incredible!

What would you like to say to SPSF NWA supporters?
I would love to say thank you so much to all the supporters of SPSF NWA! Without your support, it would be even more of a struggle for single parents like myself to continue our education. You are making a difference in not just our lives but the lives of our children. You are helping us achieve our dreams and show our children that with determination and support, we can do most anything!