For Donna Glissendorf, Sleep May Be Optional
Given Donna Glissendorf’s extremely active lifestyle and achievements, you might wonder when she finds the time to sleep. But her achievements show that it hasn’t affected her lofty results.
The 53-year-old Janesville resident has turned her life around. A former drug and alcohol abuser herself, Donna has been sober for 17 years and has earned a certificate in both AODA (Substance Abuse) and a Human Services associate degree. For most people that would be enough, but Donna has her sights set on a bachelor’s degree at UW-Whitewater in social work with a minor in human services (she is currently only a credit or two away from that minor). Her next step will then be a master’s degree.
“I checked around to find a school that had the AODA counseling program I was looking for, and Gateway (Technical College) in Racine was the only one,” Donna explained. That meant about a 70 mile one-way trek several times a week. With the assistance of the Dislocated Worker (WIA) program, Donna was able to complete the AODA (substance abuse) counselor and human services associate degree. “I also continue on with summer classes, so there’s no real ‘break’ throughout the year,” Donna said.
She also now has to work around her part-time job at Alco Care, a residential treatment facility in Janesville. “Last week I worked 28 hours, which is not uncommon,” Donna said.
Donna had a decent job at Madison Property Management, where she had worked for about six years as a maintenance technician before she was released. She searched for a new job for about a half year before turning to the Job Center. With her husband also losing his job and a number of loans due, Donna’s financial situation was dire. Her current part-time job along with the WIA and DVR assistance has been a Godsend.
Despite all of the hardships and hectic lifestyle, Donna made the President’s List with a perfect 4.0 Grade Point Average at Gateway. “I’m almost able to write my class papers in my sleep,” Donna smiled. “In fact, I often get up very early (try 3-4 a.m.) to do my class work.”
“I know the value of education and am so appreciative of the help that WIA and DVR has given me,” she added. “Cyndi (Pohl, Donna’s Caseworker) has been just terrific and helped me in so many ways. She has a real caring heart and made things so easy for me.”
You will not meet a more motivated, focused person than Donna Glissendorf. Hopefully, she’ll be able to include enough sleep in her schedule to ensure the successes she’s accomplished keep coming!