Christine's Story

I’m Christine.  I’m 72 years old – I’m a mother, a grandmother and a great grandmother. I dropped out of high school when I became pregnant in the '60s.  It was hard and as my family grew, it got harder. But I was determined to be a role model for my children. They learned that whatever your circumstances, you don’t give up.

I’ve always has some kind of job. I had to. At one time, I was in Housekeeping in University Hospital. Part of my job was to make sure packs of sterilized equipment were ready in the Operating Room. Once I noticed some devices had not been assembled properly by the night shift. So I reassembled them correctly. My supervisor noticed, and right there created a new job and title for me:  Operating Room Tech. That was a turning point— being recognized for my work and initiative. It flipped a switch and gave me encouragement! And other promotions provided healthcare benefits so I could finally get my much-needed back surgery.

Being a single mother without an education is not easy. But everybody has their own story—and their own hardships—you can’t dwell on it. My kids are grown, good and productive and I’m so proud of them all.

For 50 years, I tried many times to get that high school degree, taking a class here and there when I could, and getting closer and closer.

And I finally made it! After decades of trying, I am now a high school graduate.

Age is just a number. I earned my Certification as a Customer Service Representative in an Urban League training program and they also referred me to Dress for Success Cincinnati. Their StyleHER program was my first step. The past is past, and I’m getting ready for the future with Dress for Success. 

Yes, I’m 72, I’ve earned a high school diploma—and now it’s my time!