Class of 2015
Environmental Science Major
Upon graduating from high school, Adam Hancock was through with learning – at least for the time being – and joined the working class.
Employed as a surveyor for Hassell & Folkes, an engineering company, Adam soon realized that without a college degree, his work career plateaued quickly.
Adam spent the next several years exploring his options. He attended two community colleges – Tidewater Community College and Thomas Nelson Community College, both in Hampton Roads, Va. – and joined the U.S. Air Force Reserves as a mechanic.
He and his wife, Kelly, who was pursuing a bachelor’s degree from The College of William and Mary, were also married during this time.
Kelly’s sister, Tracy, was pursuing her collegiate studies at Bridgewater College. During visits with Tracy, Adam was able to check out the campus and meet faculty members in the science department.
Following Kelly’s graduation from W&M, the couple moved to the Bridgewater area for Adam to attend school full time.
Active in the Air Force Reserves as a mechanic on C-17s, he is completing his fourth year of a six-year contract. He travels to Dover, Del., one weekend a month and spends two weeks each year on an en route, where they travel to other countries such as Spain or Germany or to other areas of the U.S. During the summer of 2013, he had an amazing time in Alaska during an en route.
Adam enjoys being outdoors, especially snowboarding and mountain biking, being in the woods and fishing. “Getting into a career field where I could help maintain the environments I love to be in has always appealed to me,” he said. Bridgewater’s environmental science major provides a route for Adam to realize this dream.
While looking for work during the summer of 2013, Adam landed an internship with Rockingham County Environmental Services.
The college experience has been good for Adam. “It has helped me mature as far as responsibility and commitment,” he said. Time management has helped him deal with procrastination and he has developed skills to use in a career.
What advice would Adam have for other older students? Don’t be intimidated or overwhelmed thinking about it. “It can be pretty overwhelming when you see how many courses you have to take and how many credit hours are required,” he said. “The teachers are great working with the students. If you want the degree, you can do it. It is not as difficult as it may seem as long as you are committed.”