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Adult Degree Completion Student Spotlight: Tatiana Silveira

We connected with a current adult degree completion student at Southern Adventist University, Tatiana Silveira, for insights into her journey. Use her adult degree completion story as inspiration for your own and find your unique path to career growth and personal fulfillment. 

Deciding to finish your degree, and ultimately achieving your dream, shouldn’t be completed alone. Our network of advisors, mentors, and fellow students are here to help from day one. Read on to learn from Tatiana’s journey and reflect on your own.

Tatiana Silveira_SAU_ADCWhy did you decide to enroll in an adult degree completion program? 

I felt called to a different career. I knew I needed to act on the promptings of the Holy Spirit, so I was determined to pursue a degree in psychology

What inspired you to pursue your program of study?

I am currently a banker with a business degree. However, that did not stop God from calling me to a new field entirely. I felt a nudge by the Holy Spirit to shift gears and enter psychology as there was such a lack in my culture and community for faith-based therapy, especially for Adventists. 

I looked high and low for a completely online Adventist degree program that could be flexible, as I am a mother and full-time worker. At the time, Southern was the only Adventist school I could find that could meet my needs. By God’s grace, I want to enter a private practice for faith-based therapy after graduation and obtain a license to practice.

What made Southern Adventist University the best university to finish your degree?

The program’s flexibility makes this program a perfect fit for me. The 8-week online modules are accelerated but not overwhelming especially because I am determined to complete my degree as quickly as possible. Southern makes that manageable. 

The online aspect was another reason for choosing this program. I am in Massachusetts so I appreciate the ability to attend Southern without having to uproot my life.

When I attended a local college for my associate degree, I had maybe two conversations with my advisor, and I usually couldn’t get a hold of anyone. Truthfully, I can’t even remember their name. That isn’t the case with my advisors here at Southern and I’m forever grateful.

How has your experience been so far in the degree completion program?

I have the highest praise for the adult degree completion program here at Southern. Every professor has been patient, helpful, and kind and has modeled Christ-like character in teaching. 

The program director and my advisors were attentive and caring. What makes the ADC program worth taking isn’t just the stellar course modular setups, flexible workload, or even the accommodation in various student aids but it’s the people. Every person at Southern has a reason to come here. It may be because I’m not from the South or maybe because I was not always an Adventist but this level of love in this institution of education was shocking. 

I often share my experience at Southern with peers, co-workers, and friends. Without failure, in every case in which I share an experience I’ve had with a professor, all parties marvel at how compassionate such acts truly are. I’ve attended a secular college before, and the world does not have what we have here at Southern.

How has it been balancing school with work/life?

Balancing all my obligations is, at times, a lot. I truly feel supported and equipped to balance everything. I have a six-year-old daughter and she likes to sit by my desk and draw while I do homework. She says she’s also doing homework. While I cook and clean, I listen to the week’s readings. When I go to work, I chip away at assignments between tasks. 

What was the application process like? 

The application process was simple and user-friendly. I can’t imagine anyone having too much difficulty applying. During my application process, my advisor was so quick to reach out and walk me through each step of the process. My advisors, both Cynthia and Nataliia, were attentive to detail and always available.

Cynthia works tirelessly for her students. She diligently kept track of my progress and reached out often. She gave me reminders and calls to ensure my success. I have never once felt unsupported at Southern Adventist University with her.

You’re the Southern expert! Share tips or advice for new students.

I stand by my decision to attend Southern. Finishing your degree here will allow you to be a champion for Christ in your respective fields. 

I recommend using all the resources while attending. There are so many academic resources on and off campus like tutoring, e-libraries, subscriptions, counseling, and many other support systems. 

I would also add that your professors and advisors are some of the greatest resources you’ll come across. Each one holds invaluable experience and knowledge. Don’t be shy, ask all you can because Southern delivers!

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