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Barb Anderson, Student/Volunteer for Parenting Center

“I am so thrilled and impressed with the Parenting Center.”

After raising her two sons, Barb Anderson was ready to take the next step in her life and return to school. A year and a half ago she came to AACC to explore one of her lifelong interests – child psychology.

The first class she took was developmental psychology. Lou Aymard, the director of the Parenting Center at AACC, spoke in one of her classes and mentioned that there was an open volunteer position at the center. Barb was immediately interested and took the position.

“As a volunteer, I visit churches and child development and daycare centers around Anne Arundel County, especially the northern part, and let them know about the Parenting Center’s programs and services," said Barb. "I let them know about the classes and seminars and that we can bring them to their part of the county.”

Recently, Barb completed an online research project on community colleges in the country that have parenting centers. She was fascinated to learn that only about 12 have them. Barb said that the results of her research emphasize the need for parenting education.

“I think every parent needs to be informed,” said Barb. “There is no test or class that we need to take to become parents. We all need, myself included, to be educated to better raise our children to be productive and caring human beings.”

Barb has taken eight classes so far at AACC, including credit psychology classes and noncredit parenting classes.

“With every class I have learned something," said Barb. "They have been so informative and very much needed. I can’t say enough about the classes. They have just been excellent. My children are now in college but the classes are still informative because I can provide advice to friends and family.”

Barb frequently finds herself helping her younger siblings with issues related to their children. But now, instead of winging it and going with her gut, she can apply what she learned in her classes and offer suggestions to them.

“I have had a very positive experience at AACC,” said Barb. “I have learned from the classes and I think it is a good atmosphere on the campus. I have enjoyed the professors as well as the students. All the instructors are genuinely concerned. They want parents to be better educated and equipped for raising their children.”

Barb hopes to earn her associate’s degree in child psychology by 2007 and then pursue a bachelor’s degree. She plans to continue taking noncredit parenting classes and volunteering for the Parenting Center.

“I am so thrilled and impressed with the Parenting Center,” said Barb. “It is very important and it is exciting to work with.”

Interested in learning more about Barb’s experience at AACC and with the Parenting Center? Send her an e-mail!