University of Northern Iowa junior Lance Webber knew he needed a change. It started with a visit to the UNI campus.
Webber, a father of two and non-traditional student, worked as a delivery driver for various companies after graduating from Waterloo West High School. He made the decision to pursue a college education after realizing the positions he was in would not provide the stability and career advancement opportunities his young family needed.
That led him to visit UNI a week prior to classes starting in January 2015. He had an expectation of enrolling the following fall. However, with the help of an advisor, Webber was able to start his college experience the following week.
“I don’t know if I would say it was a leap of faith or a leap of desperation,” said Webber. “I just knew I needed something different. I didn’t have it all figured out, and I didn’t know financially how I was going to pay for it.”
That’s where scholarships came in. Webber received the Alderman Scholarship, Roy J. Carver Scholarship and the Joanne C. Tefft Elementary Education Endowed Scholarship to help make his time at UNI more affordable, giving him the ability to focus on his studies and balance his many duties as a husband and father.
“I was floored when I found out,” Webber said. “When I found out that I had gotten those, it gave me the confidence that I can do this. I didn’t have it worked out. Getting scholarships really set me up to be able to succeed when I’m done with school. It was a big deal.”
Webber is an Elementary Education major at UNI with hopes of becoming a teacher after graduating. However, a diploma from UNI will mean more than just a career to him.
“For me to get my degree and be able to get into a stable career that I can have a future in means that my family has overcome a battle, and it gives us a much brighter future,” said Webber.
Do you want to help students like Webber pursue a college education? Learn how you can make a difference at uni-foundation.org.
“Scholarship support makes a huge difference and it’s much appreciated,” said Webber. "I didn’t know when I started how I would get through school. It was a big step into the unknown financially to come back to school, so those scholarships have made a huge difference to me.”