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Degree earned nearly entirely online by 2018 graduate

Mesa Journal News salutes one of its own

Kelsie+Clifton+is+a+Spring+2018+graduation+candidate.+Aside+from+one+course%2C+while+completing+an+Associate%27s+degree%2C+she+earned+a+degree+from+UTPB+online.+
Kelsie Clifton is a Spring 2018 graduation candidate. Aside from one course, while completing an Associate's degree, she earned a degree from UTPB online.

Kelsie Clifton is a Spring 2018 graduation candidate. Aside from one course, while completing an Associate's degree, she earned a degree from UTPB online.

Kelsie Clifton is a Spring 2018 graduation candidate. Aside from one course, while completing an Associate's degree, she earned a degree from UTPB online.

Staff Reporter, Staff Reports

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Kelsie Clifton (right) with her mother, Sophia Clifton.

Kelsie Clifton, known as a writer and columnist for the Mesa Journal News online, earned everything but one class of her Associate’s Degree (from Odessa College) online from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Set to graduate on Saturday, May 5, Clifton will be awarded a Bachelor of Arts in Communications with a minor in management from UTPB.

The graduate candidate said that her future plans are “to be in a career that involves empowering women in some way–whether it is through the beauty industry, inspiration, or both. A lot of young girls go through things as children or young adults which affects their confidence and how they see themselves in their adult lives. I like reminding women of who they are and how powerful they can be. I love encouraging and empowering people to be the best version of their unique selves.”
After working for the Mesa journal News, Clifton became employed with a company that she said: “is all about empowerment and equality in the beauty industry so I would love to move up in the company eventually. I enjoy all things social media, marketing, and public relations so I know any of these positions would be appealing to me.” She added, that on a more personal note: “I would like to start a nonprofit organization which would benefit victims of sexual abuse and also help put an end to sex trafficking.”
Being goal-oriented has been a plus for succeeding in obtaining a university degree, Clifton noted. Her advice to fellow online students: “Stay focused, participate in the discussion boards, set reminders, and don’t think that your class will be easy just because you are taking it online. I had many friends who attended UTPB during my time there and a lot of them actually shared with me that my classes seemed harder. Online classes aren’t for everyone because they take commitment and a lot of self-discipline but in the end it is rewarding. Not all of your friends will understand why you have to spend the weekend at home studying and not going out despite the fact that you are at home. However, you have to treat your office, table, coffee shop, whatever it is like it’s a on-campus class that you can’t be late to.”
Relating her best moments with UTPB, the future graduate said: “I honestly could never thank the Mesa Journal News or Dr. Myra Salcedo enough. I remember when I first reached out to Dr. Salcedo I was not confident in my writing at all. I didn’t even consider myself a writer. I still have the email that she sent me the first time that I sent her my first story. She was so impressed and had such good things to say about my writing. Even sharing with me that I was one of her best writers that she had had over the years. It helped to pull something out of me that I didn’t know I had. My hobby became my passion which led to my career. I didn’t only develop in my writing through my time there but I also developed in myself. I gained confidence in my skills which actually helped me to apply with the company I am at now. I know that the skills that I have learned will not only help me in my career but also in life. Being a writer is not something that somebody wakes up one day and decides to do but it is a part of who you are. Thank you Mesa Journal for encouraging me to always put myself out there, ask the hard questions, and when all else fails, write about it.”
Her inspiration was her family. “I come from a family of educators so everyone (all the way to my great grandmother) all graduated college. My mom has her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. My family believes in the power of education and they have been a huge encouragement on this journey. My mom has been my number one supporter in reminding me not to give up, even when it got hard.”
Clifton said that there were challenges along the way. “If you have ever been a student you know that things happen in life that set you back. Unexpected challenges come and sometimes we even face a loss or death in the middle of working toward our degree. I would have to say that finding the strength to keep pushing even when life knocked me down was the most challenging time as a student–choosing to stay committed to the journey even when I couldn’t see the finish line. As a Christian woman, I chose to put my hope in Christ instead of giving in. That is not to say that the challenges ever stopped coming but there was strength to get through them.”
Her favorite moments: “Some of my best moments as a student were actually working for Mesa Journal. As an online student, I Didn’t really interact as much with the students on campus or professors besides the times that I would go up there to hang out with friends. However, writing weekly stories gave me the chance to meet new people and participate in the UTPB culture.”
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One Response to “Degree earned nearly entirely online by 2018 graduate”

  1. Granny Sue on April 30th, 2018 3:47 pm

    I am so PROUD of you! You are such a beautiful young lady, inside and out! Best wishes for what your future holds for you. God’s blessings on you!

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Degree earned nearly entirely online by 2018 graduate