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An Education Worth Finishing

Feb 2021

woman standing in her home in front of picture of Jesus Christ

Born and raised in the Philippines, Joy Escalante has just finished her third semester at Ensign College. Having attended several colleges throughout her life, she finally feels like she has a plan she can complete. Serving a mission, getting married, having five children, and relocating with her family to Washington, California, the Philippines, Hawaii, and eventually Utah stopped her from attending school many times. The one time in her educational journey that she finished school was when she earned her PathwayConnect certificate while living in Hawaii.

Being a member of the first Pathway graduating group in her stake is a moment of pride in Escalante’s life. “There were seven of us that did it all together,” says Escalante. “It sharpened my brain and helped me learn spiritual and temporal things at the same time.” She especially loved the weekly gatherings and how everyone had a chance to talk and lead the group. “I liked the small setting because I learned more, and my confidence grew in those situations,” she says. “The group discussions are where I really learned in a deeper way, and I wouldn’t be almost done with college without it.”

After moving to Utah, Escalante still felt a strong desire to finish her education, even though her husband became sick and unable to work. She prayed about it, and soon after, a friend told her about Ensign College (then LDS Business College). After learning more, she didn’t think she would be able to afford the tuition, until she found out about the Pathway Scholarship. She is now almost finished with a certificate in human resource management. “The scholarship I have now made it possible for me to continue my education,” says Escalante. “I love my classes here at Ensign College and how, just like BYU–Pathway, the spiritual and temporal are combined every time. I know that [God] answered my prayers with this scholarship.”