Military Veteran, Mom, Entrepreneur—and Graduate! Meet Theresa Taylor

Theresa Taylor received respectable grades in high school, was awarded a scholarship for college, and enrolled right away. Although her career goals and aspirations were undecided at the time, it had always been her plan to obtain a college degree. Her father had been successful, but did not graduate from high school—neither parent attended college, and she was going to break that pattern … or so she thought.

Then the U.S. Air Force came calling, and Theresa dropped out of college. She spent the next four years of her life serving in England, where she completed a few classes here and there at local colleges, but never committed to a specific degree program. Employment in the military made school a challenge, and online education was not yet available.

Although school plans had not panned out, Theresa obtained a valuable skill overseas, and one that has served her well throughout her life: discipline.

Following her deployment in England, Miami became Theresa’s home. She continued to serve at a local Air Force base and found additional employment with a bank. The opportunity for a college degree became plausible after she left the military. Theresa completed cosmetology school, but realized it was not a career she would enjoy long term.

She married a fellow service member and raised five children in Louisiana before her husband also left the military, and she began helping him with a new business venture. Between administration and entrepreneurship, Theresa discovered her true passion and was ready to follow it. She enrolled at WGU to obtain the education she had always desired, a B.S. Business Management degree, to continue working for her husband’s company.

WGU made it possible for Theresa to complete the degree she had always planned on while tending to the needs of her family, which includes a child with a developmental disability and another with autism.

“My mentor provided constant support and encouraged my progress when I was faced with life’s challenges,” Theresa explained. “Although the school work was challenging, I was always provided with the resources I needed to succeed.”

Not only does she now have the education to understand the ins and outs of running her current business; Theresa believes her new degree will also be an asset as she furthers her dreams of becoming an entrepreneur. She plans to create a nonprofit organization focused on educating others on financial literacy, including consulting.

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