Inherent stubbornness helps student graduate against all odds

<p>Chelsey Blue Spicer was determined to graduate. When Spicer was growing up in Southern California, she was a foster child for part of the time, and by the time she reached 18 years old, had lived in 58 different houses and experienced some abuse along the way.</p><separator></separator><p>Even after living through the experiences that she did, “Spicer stubbornness” is what Chelsey claims helped her make it through her degree program at Arizona State University.</p><separator></separator><p>After working two part-time jobs averaging 60 hours a week, going to school full time and operating on about four hours of sleep a night for the last two years, she will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in English from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the age of 25, proving many who doubted her wrong.</p><separator></separator><p>“I just plain and simple refuse to quit,” says Spicer. “I have made it – an accomplishment few thought was possible for me. I guess my biggest adversity I had to face was that everyone expected me to fail.”</p><separator></separator><p>Initially, Spicer struggled with college because she tried so hard to fit in whether it was in the program of study she initially selected or with her roommates and classmates.</p><separator></separator><p>“I spent five years trying to force my way through the biology program; however, I was miserable,” she admits. “I disliked pipetting, dissecting and mixing chemicals.”</p><separator></separator><p>Eventually, after some soul searching, she realized biology was not the right fit and the path she was heading down socially was not going to help her get through school.</p><separator></separator><p>“In my spare time, I would read two to three books at a time within a few days. I loved novels and non-fiction,” says Spicer. “I wanted to discuss the allegories and metaphors, but no one I knew read books as quickly as I did. Taking a huge leap of faith, I changed my major to English literature and went from having straight C and Ds to As.</p><separator></separator><p>After graduation, Spicer plans to attend graduate school at ASU, to earn a master’s degree in English literature and enjoy life for a bit.&nbsp; And she wants to give back.</p><separator></separator><p>“Eventually, I want to be a professor,” says Spicer. “I also would like to play as hard as I work for a change. And, in a few years, I want to be a foster parent for thrown around, abused kids like me.”</p><separator></separator><p>Spicer is one of 164 English majors who is graduating this semester from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The college is hosting convocation on May 14 at Wells Fargo Arena. The university is holding its undergraduate commencement at 8:30 a.m., May 13, at Wells Fargo Arena. Visit <a href="; target="_blank"></a&gt; for more information.</p>