Wilmington, NC (WWAY)- "I mean in today's society, with the way the world is going, you will not be able to function in this world without an education," says CFCC graduate Shynett Batts.
Shynett Batts didn't expect to spend the better part of a decade getting her degree from Cape Fear Community College. She enrolled for the first time in 2000, but she gave birth to the second of her three children on the day classes were supposed to start for her second semester. Less than a year later she gave birth to her third child.
"I didn't just tell them that education is important," said Batts. "I'm showing them how much it's important."
Batts went back to Cape Fear while working to support her family. But shortly after she returned doctors told her she would have to have surgery on her foot.
"Surgery didn't go good. I ended up having to have a second surgery and was told I had to have a third surgery."
She wasn't able to work and was eventually evicted.
"You know you're talking full-time mother, full-time student, full-time employee, and you know one day you don't have a home."
Batts became depressed, dropped out of school, and quit her job. One doctor even recommended she apply for disability.
"I left his office, I bypassed social security, and I went back to CFCC and that was in '07 when I went and signed back up for school."
With the help of her teachers Batts was finally able to focus on school. Friday, she graduated from CFCC with a Paralegal Diploma and Civil Litigation Certificate. Batts says she will pursue a career in criminal justice and is already looking to the future.
"I would love to see myself retire with the FBI."