The Vol State Family: Student Carrie Irvin

Vol State student Carrie Irvin

It’s tough juggling college and family, especially when the kids are wondering why mommy studies all of the time.

“My little girls think it’s awesome that I’m going to school,” said Carrie Irvin of Gallatin. “But my daughter Brittany says mommy becomes a bear around finals time.”

Carrie wants to make sure her daughters understand the value of college, something they might not fully appreciate until they are out on their own.

“Women get walked-on every day. You need to learn to depend on yourself. You should be able to provide for yourself,” she said. “I have a rule that if you don’t go to college and graduate, I won’t be paying for your wedding.”

Carrie moved to Gallatin from Indiana three years ago. At first she thought a medical career was her goal, but then she decided to make a switch.

“I picked Medical Practice Management, but it just wasn’t my thing.  I was talking to a friend about it and told her I was thinking of getting a general business degree. George Wilson heard and said ‘Carrie you have to talk to me.’

George Wilson is the director of the Logistics and Supply Chain Management program at Vol State. It’s a complicated name for a very basic need: moving goods and keeping track of where they go. It’s something Carrie found she understood well.

“I had never even heard of the word logistics before I came here. I took the technical certificate first. I just love it.”

Now she’s getting ready to graduate with an associate degree. Her plan is to graduate at the end of the fall semester and then attend Tennessee State University for their ecommerce program. Along the way she is making connections and meeting people in Logistics. It’s something the Vol State program is known for.

“My wallet is busting full from business cards,” she said. “I go to ISM (Institute for Supply Management) meetings. At first I was real nervous. You force yourself to introduce yourself. That was hard for me.”

Carrie won a scholarship from the Nashville ISM chapter and is doing an internship with the GAP Distribution Center in Gallatin.

Her college career hasn’t been easy. There have been plenty of bumps along the way. She credits the TRIO Student Support Services program at Vol State for helping her achieve her dreams.

“I’ll be the first one in my family to graduate from college. TRIO can help with everything step by step. I’ve gone in there with tears in my eyes from failing a test- they’re there to help you succeed. Having five kids and a household and working, there’s a lot of stress. It’s good to have someone to talk to.”

Carrie boasts a 3.75 grade point average and plans to graduate with honors.

“I got my GED in 2006 and now I’m almost a college graduate. My 17 year-old daughter wants to be an attorney.”