Elizabeth Francis

- Student; On Location

I have a point to prove.

Elizabeth Francis, a 27-year-old freshman in SNHU’s Advantage Program, is enrolled in college not for the first time, but the second. 

At age 16, Elizabeth began having seizures. Over the following nine years her seizures stopped responding to medication, eventually forcing her to drop out of college. One day while driving, Elizabeth had a grand mal seizure that resulted in car crash and the sudden loss of a large portion of her memory.

“It’s like I went to bed as a 19-year-old and when I woke up, I was 25,” she says.

The severity of Elizabeth’s condition forced her to consider and eventually opt for a surgery so complicated she wasn’t certain she would survive.

“They took out my entire right temporal lobe. A piece the size of a fist,” she says.

Elizabeth decided to give college a second try because she was, more than anything else, exceptionally bored after having spent nearly two years at home preparing for, having and recovering from her surgery.

Once a student for whom school was nearly effortless, Elizabeth describes her first semester at SNHU as frustratingly “less easy than I thought it would be ... the way my brain works is just so different than before.”  But the Advantage Program, a part-time, affordable, on-site program culminating in an associate degree, seems to be a great fit.

“All of my classes are small. There are only seven people in my cohort... and the teachers always make themselves available to answer questions after class,” she says. “They want you to succeed.

 “I want to prove that I can do it,” Elizabeth says. “I want a degree and a job. I want to start living my life.”

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