Donna Worley began her career at Southside Virginia Community College as an accounts receivable clerk.
But, that’s not where her story ends.
Not long after being hired, Worley would earn her associate in arts and sciences through SVCC. But she wanted more so she enrolled at American Public University where she would go on to receive a bachelor’s degree in information technology management.
“I like gleaning information. If you can just pull it (the data) out, it’s useful in every facet of what we do.”
While hitting the books and working full-time, Worley says it helped to have a supportive spouse.
“I could be sitting at my desk at all hours completing schoolwork and he wouldn’t say a word. He would just come in and drop a plate of food in front of me, pat me on the back and turn around and leave.”
Worley still works at SVCC but she’s now the administrative assistant in the college’s foundation office where she manages the scholarship program.
“We hear stories every day about students who could not attend if it were not for the scholarship assistance they receive.”
Being selected for the Chancellor’s Classified Fellowship Award means Worley can now take the better part of a year off to pursue her master’s in information technology from Virginia Tech and still receive three-quarters pay and benefits. VCCS will pick up the tab for her tuition.
Looking ahead, Worley says the near future is going to be both challenging and exciting.
“Even though it’s an online program, we work in groups and teams and we get to engage with other individuals who have similar goals or who’ve already been working in the field. It’s very rewarding.”
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