Non-Traditional Students Graduate from Concord

For Immediate Release: 
May 22 2002

Non-Traditional Students Graduate from Concord

Athens, W.Va. - "Non-traditional" is a description of college students who are 25 years old or older or fit into other select categories as defined by the Higher Education Policy Commission. Concord College graduation ceremonies this spring included 81 non-traditional students out of a total of 282 students who graduated.

One non-traditional student, Nita Lynn Vaught, age 38, from Spanishburg, W.Va., graduated as a double major with an associate of arts degree in office supervision and a bachelor’s degree in social work. She hopes to work for the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources in Princeton.

After high school, Mrs. Vaught attended one year at AAA Midwest Beauty College in Colorado. Upon returning home, she found that income opportunities in her field were not what she expected. So, for the benefit of her family’s future, she decided to go back to college.

Mrs. Vaught said that going to college at this point in her life had several benefits. Not only will it improve the future of her family, it will allow her to be a good role model for her children. Mrs. Vaught’s daughter will be attending Concord next fall. "If my children actually see that I can do it, then they know they can do it."

When asked about her experience at Concord, Mrs. Vaught said, "The experience has been very beneficial. All of my professors have guided me in the right direction."

Another non-traditional student, Freda Boggess, age 63, from Glen Daniel, W.Va., is an excellent example of Concord’s philosophy of promoting lifelong learning. She graduated with a Regents bachelor of arts degree with an emphasis on early childhood education.

Mrs. Boggess began her higher education in 1971 after obtaining her GED. She went to work for Headstart, which required her to participate in continuing education classes. She took classes as she could while juggling work and raising her children. Finally she decided that since she was putting in all the time and work she might as well get the paper proving that she did it. People may wonder why Mrs. Boggess wanted to get this college degree when she is nearly at retirement age. She answered, "It’s proof of what I have been doing for the last thirty years."

She cites several people as her inspiration and motivation for sticking with her studies. Headstart supervisor, Virginia Bonds always told her to not give up. Mrs. Boggess said, "Without all the encouragement and support from Concord staff members Bob Whittinghill and April Puzzuoli, I may not have finished. And my goal was to finish."

For more information on attending Concord College call 1-888-384-5249 or 1-304-384-5248 or e-mail


Concord College Notes: Keith Circle, a student in Concord College’s Communication Arts Department wrote this press release. His hometown is Athens, W.Va. His anticipated graduation date is August 2003.