Many people consider starting college later in life. These students juggle many responsibilities: children, work, and studies, and sometimes there isn’t enough money to meet all of their obligations. That is where the American Indian College Fund can help.
Ninety-one percent of Fund scholarship recipients are "non-traditional" students— they have dependents, are older than 24, work full-time—or have a combination of these characteristics. Shirley (Crow) isn’t just a statistic—her story shows what a 30-year old single mother can achieve once she decides to make a better life for herself.
Shirley is a member of the Big Lodge Clan and child of the Bad War Deeds. She was raised by her two grandparents on the Crow Indian reservation. She married young, had three children, and struggled in an abusive relationship and with alcoholism. Her grandparents’ deaths were also difficult for her.
When she turned 30, Shirley says she realized she had to be strong because she has no one else to depend upon. “I am a strong woman who is responsible and has gained independence for myself and for my children…now that my oldest daughter is 14 years old, I believe that I should become a positive role model for her in pursuing my education,” Shirley says.
Shirley is attending Little Big Horn College, where she is studying pre-nursing. She plans to transfer to Salish Kootenai College to earn her bachelor’s degree. Shirley is committed to success for herself and for her children and has pledged to earn all A's in college. She was awarded the Dave Rogers & Cargill Extend Your Tribal Family Scholarship in the amount of $1,250.
Shirley has proven that anything is possible at any stage of life if you are committed to yourself, your family, and your dreams.