No Better Training than Motherhood

by Mabel Baldwin-Schaeffer

“It wasn’t the last time I’d find that there’s no better training grounds for politics than motherhood.” ~Sarah Palin in Going Rogue

As opposed to Palin’s career in politics, I use her saying in respect to my post-secondary education. I initially started college in 2001, but after some time, I decided to quit school to start a family. Returning to work and then school was a challenge that I had to figure out through trial and error.

While my husband works “up north” two weeks onsite and one week off, I continue my work here. In my trek of pulling off yet another school semester as a full-time student, I’m still juggling between my children and school. (And, I must say that, receiving a B at this point is almost not acceptable to me.) I find myself replacing the story of Cinderella with my Economics text, singing logarithmic equations to my newborn son rather than lullabies, and settling on measly noodles for dinner (again) so that I can do homework.

Attending school prior to meeting my husband and having children was an experience in itself, but not as great as it is now. It is an ever more rewarding effort.


Mabel Baldwin-Schaeffer will be APU’s first graduate in the new Sustainable Studies Program, finishing her BA in Spring 2013. Her senior project examines subsistence issues related to her home community of Kiana and the decline in the Western Arctic Caribou Herd.