Returning Student Finds Encouragement and Hope During Difficult Times

"I now know I am 100% capable of doing what I have my heart set on- because of the success, encouragement, and resources I found within my academic career at UVU."

Elizabeth Robison was 13 when her Dutch parents decided to move to the Netherlands. Being born in Utah and raised in the Uintah basin, moving was a brand new adventure with some unintended outcomes. During this time, Robison's formal education came to a standstill. Her schooling consisted of attending an assimilation school that taught only the Dutch language. She longed for more. Her inner drive to learn was so great that she spent her free time on the computer learning math. By age 19, Robison was able to receive her GED.

Robison had discovered a love of learning and longed to do more. In 2013 Robison moved back to Utah and began her college education. With aspirations of an Elementary Education degree, she started school. After only one year of classes under her belt, Robison stepped away from learning once more. This time it was to help put her now ex-husband through his college degree. Not until 2018 was she able to begin down the road to education once more.

This love of learning and desire to further her education drove her endeavors in various directions making it difficult to decide on a major. Then she discovered the Family Science program. Within this program, she found an avenue to pursue a degree that encompassed most of her interests. She wanted to teach, help, guide, advocate and organize. The skills and tools that she learned in her family science major provided her with a well-rounded skill set. Robison has found that these attributes will enable her to succeed in any career she chooses, even those outside her chosen career path.

Robison will be the first to admit that she struggled with math during her time at UVU. At times, she wasn't sure that she would ever complete the required courses needed to enroll in her degree program. Then Robison met Kristen Nuesmeyer, an academic advisor. Kristen took the time to help her find the help she needed, continuously checked in with her and encouraged Robison to persevere. This consistent encouragement and undaunted faith in her abilities gave Robison the confidence she needed to continue her educational journey - even through the most challenging times.

Robison contributes her success to the many instructors who helped drive her enthusiasm for learning. She states that Julie Nelson, an Associate Professor in Family Science, was one particular faculty member who truly impacted her. Professor Nelson was Robison's first instructor within the family science program, and her enthusiasm for the subject affected Robison. Professor Nelson's excitement for the subject, what they were learning, why it mattered, and the difference that just one person could make influenced Robison more than she ever imagined. She could tell Professor Nelson cared deeply about what she taught and, in turn, kindled a fire within Robison.

When asked about her future plans, she states that this is just the beginning. "I now know I am 100% capable of doing what I have my heart set on- because of the success, encouragement, and resources I found within my academic career at UVU." Today, Robison is in sales operations for Visa. She loves her job and attributes her success to the skills and knowledge she acquired from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Utah Valley University.