The Hub Celebrating inspiring moms—and AU students and grads

Celebrating inspiring moms—and AU students and grads

How flexible online learning allowed these moms to balance work, studies, family life, and more!

Raising children while pursuing higher education can be a daunting challenge.

Balancing family, studies, and career requires a good support system—and often a few tradeoffs and sacrifices along the way. That’s why so many students turn to Athabasca University (AU), so they can study at their own pace as life and family demands allow.

But don’t take our word for it. Through our Transforming Lives series, dozens of students and alumni have shared their stories about their education journey with AU. Many of these inspiring individuals are mothers, whose hard work and sacrifice are worthy of celebration.

So for Mother’s Day, we’re sharing the stories of 5 moms who worked hard to transform their lives through open, online education.

Nurse. Newborns. Health-care executive.

“By the time the first [MBA] in-residence program came around, I was more than 20 weeks pregnant with our first baby,” writes Leanne Bulmer (Master of Business Administration ’12).

“When I graduated in 2012, I was pregnant with our second baby. Looking back on this time, I honestly am not sure how I juggled work, pregnancy, infants, and school. But I am so thankful to AU for offering a program that allowed me to reach my goals.

Read Bulmer’s story

Counsellor. Distance learning. Family convocation.

“The pacing of courses allowed me to work part time, be an involved parent, and maintain a healthy active lifestyle,” writes Cara Zaharychuk (Master of Counselling ’17).

“The ability to continue my education—all from the comfort of my own home and without uprooting my family—was invaluable.

Read Zaharychuk’s story.

Rural nursing. Family. Farm life.

“I love that learning online allows me to keep my job as a licensed practical nurse and spend as much time with my kids at home,” writes Karlie Strand, a current AU student.

“Some days it is challenging to find the time, but with a very supportive spouse I am able to manage my school life.”

Read Strand’s story.

Career pursuits. Flexibility. Volunteerism.

“I love that with AU I can learn at any time of the day. With my busy schedule, studying sometimes begins in the evening,” writes non-program student Victoria Lang.

“I am also able to do things I love, such as volunteering and visiting my family abroad, without sacrificing my education.”

Read Lang’s story.

Growth. Education. Second career.

“I decided to enrol full time at AU to pursue a career in health that will allow me to have financial success and grow,” writes AU student Kim Leppington.

“I am thankful for AU’s flexible nature as I can stay home with my son and complete my courses in the evening.”

Read Leppington’s story.

Transforming Lives: Learners of AU

Read more profiles of AU students and grads in our series Transforming Lives: Learners of AU.

Filed Under:
  • May 9, 2023