Rondel – A Match Beyond Student

Rondel graduated from high school in 2005.  He earned a National Merit Scholarship and embarked upon his college career at a private college.  After completing two years and amassing $67,000 in debt, Rondel learned that he was no longer eligible for student loans and had to withdraw.  Since then, he has enrolled in a state university and a community college, but cost and a demanding work schedule prevented Rondel from earning his degree.

In 2014, Rondel discovered Match Beyond and enrolled immediately.  Rondel is now 85% of the way towards his Associate’s Degree—and he has paid nothing out of pocket.  Rondel reflects upon his experiences:

What drew you to Match Beyond?

At the time I discovered Match Beyond, I was working two jobs, one forty hours a week and one twenty hours a week just to pay off my student loans.  I was paying for this incomplete education that I couldn’t use and couldn’t return.  

When Bob Hill (Director of Coaching) explained Match Beyond to me, it became very clear that this is what college was supposed to be for me in the first place.  When he laid it out for me, it made sense.  It was just straightforward.  I felt like I was reading simple directions for how to earn a degree and prepare myself for my future.

How has Match Beyond fit within your schedule?

When I started, my coach asked me how much time I could devote.  I told him I could do one day a week because I was working more than full-time.  He said, “ok.”  With that one day a week, I began to master some projects, get some reviews back, and see results.  It motivated me to keep moving forward.

When my work schedule changed and I was working nights, I could still make progress.  With Match Beyond, school isn’t closed at 5:00 AM. 

What has it been like to have a coach through Match Beyond?

My coach makes it clear he’s here if I need his help.  It feels like there’s someone you can ask questions to.  If you try and fail a couple times, there are still more avenues to take.  If you feel like you’re not getting it, he’ll point you in other directions.

How do you anticipate earning your degree will impact your life?

Once you have a degree, you can get better jobs.  You don’t feel like you’re a second-class citizen. A degree puts you on a level playing field with other people.  Lots of jobs require experience.  But you have to have a diploma before you can get the experience. 

What would you say to someone considering Match Beyond?

I’ve already referred a few people.  I just tell people Match Beyond has worked for me and it can work for them too.  It’s a degree that you can actually earn that’s not going to make you poor.