Vickie Southerland

Vickie Southerland: “Nothing Was Going to Stop Me”

Vickie Southerland, a Management and Leadership graduate, landed a promotion one week after earning her bachelor’s degree from Goodwin.

Southerland started out as a customer service representative for CTrides, part of the Department of Transportation, and now works as an outreach coordinator promoting sustainability, carpooling, and telecommuting.

After being laid off from two prior positions — one for 11 years in and another for four — Southerland appreciates the stability that Goodwin and her current job have afforded her. “I want to stay stable,” she noted.

Southerland started her journey at Goodwin when she was 40 years old. “I became a mom at 16. My life was all about supporting my family,” she stated. “I worked three jobs at one point. I made ends meet, but I knew there was something more.”

The road was not without its challenges. While in school, she was undergoing treatment for Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, a disease in which the immune system attacks platelets. “My professors and advisors were wonderful,” Southerland commented. “I was going to the cancer center two or three times a week trying different therapies, but I was still able to keep up with school with their help.”

Southerland appreciated their patience and compassion. “I wouldn’t have received the same treatment anywhere else. Goodwin selects its faculty and staff wisely.”

Southerland also credited her fellow students for their support and drive. “I met people from all walks of life and we pulled each other up.”

Southerland is proving that despite the speed bumps along the way she doesn’t give up. “I have goals. Nothing was going to stop me.”