“After all my education experience, Ivy Tech would still be my first choice!”
Candice Silvas defines success as “knowing you have done the absolute best you can do in your present circumstances.” That’s not only a philosophy for Candice, but also a way of life.
At 16 Candice had her first son, Bryon. For many students, becoming a teen parent might mean dropping out of high school, but that wasn’t the case for Candice. As a new, single mother, she enrolled in an alternative high school where Bryon could go to a day care center on-site. After graduation, Candice married and began working full-time. She and her husband, Ray, welcomed a daughter, Emily, and Candice stepped into the role of step-mom to Ray’s daughter, Kaitlyn. Struggling to support her growing family, Candice realized that a college degree could help her earn a higher wage. “I needed a college that would be cost effective, offer a flexible schedule, and have minimal travel time,” Candice says.
Ivy Tech was the perfect fit. “The course schedules were amazing; they offered a large array of class times…which were perfect for a working parent!” Candice says. Candice credits much of her initial success to Tony Thomas, Associate Director of Advising at the Michigan City campus. Tony helped Candice navigate financial aid, the enrollment process, and her placement exam results. “His passion was extremely evident,” Candice says. “He became my go-to guy for everything.” Tony made such an impression on Candice that she brought friends and family to enroll at Ivy Tech.
After completing her associate degree in Elementary Education, Candice transferred her courses seamlessly to Purdue North Central and earned her bachelor’s degree. She’s now working on her MBA from Indiana Wesleyan University. Out of all her college experiences, Candice’s favorite is Ivy Tech. “The coursework is as rigorous as any other college, but the fantastic customer service and the feeling of belonging cannot be replicated anywhere else,” Candice says. “After all my education experience, Ivy Tech would still be my first choice!”
Candice now works for the Salvation Army of Michigan City as the Community Resource Coordinator and Director of Development. She also was recently elected to the Michigan City Common Council.