Where business turns to education, this student finds her calling
When her 18-year career in the banking industry was cut short due to a merger and her job being phased out, Serena Roshawn Wilson Moore of Radford, knew what she needed to do.
To pursue a dream of starting her own business, a 24-hour day care center for children, Moore needed a business degree.
She enrolled in classes at New River Community College in Dublin and the rest, as they say, is history.
While she was a student, she found joy in helping people. Her financial aid package included a work/study job at the college in its Accountability in Student Learning Program (ASLP) while she took classes. She also had short-term work in the summers working with newly re-vamped student orientations. After the first orientation during the summer of 2015, Moore says she found her calling.
“I enjoyed advising and talking one-on-one with the new students,” she says. After that experience, she began to think about switching her major to education.
She talked with an academic advisor at NRCC who posed an interesting question as to whether parents who brought their children to her future day care center would be more impressed with someone with a business degree, or one who has a degree in education with a credential to teach.
Moore later took a part-time job as a tutor in the college’s Academic Assistance office while continuing to take classes for her associate degree, and further affirming her desire to major in education.
This spring, before graduation, she accepted an administrative specialist position in the ASLP office. Moore earned an Associate in Arts and Sciences degree in education in May 2017, becoming the first in her family to attend and graduate from college. She is spending the summer deciding where to transfer to pursue her bachelor’s degree in education and teaching credential from the three colleges that have accepted her for admission.
While work, classes and studying are almost all-consuming, Moore has a husband and family and is active in her church. She and her husband, Vincent, have four children ages 12 to 24. Their 18-year old son will attend New River this fall with a newly created Access to Community College Education (ACCE) scholarship, which is a financial aid/community service-oriented program, through the City of Radford and NRCC’s Educational Foundation.
Gifted in music (some say she has the voice of an angel), Moore has been the director of the adult choir for Radford Church of God in Christ for 30 years, a position she has held since she was 11 years old. She also sings with a group, “Chosen,” which travels for performances and weddings, and is recording a CD of gospel music.
While she will continue her employment at New River, Moore still has the ultimate goal of opening her own 24-hour day care center in the New River Valley after completing her education.