By Bobbie Bowen, Contributing Writer
I am the fourth generation in my family to attend Potomac State College. My great-grandmother, Lottie Weimer, attended PSC in the 40s before continuing her education at Davis and Elkins College. The stories of her time at PSC inspired her son, George Bowen, to attend directly after graduating high school in the late 60s. Then, my father, Jason Bowen, attended after his service in the United States Air Force in 2001.
By this point in his life, he was a single father with an injured back and knees from a parachuting incident overseas.
He wanted to further his education to provide an easier life for me. When he had nobody to watch me during his classes, he brought me with him. He was nervous that his teachers would have a problem with it, but none of them did. One teacher even had a special chair for me. He was able to continue his education at PSC until I started school.
My stepmother, Sandra Bowen, is also a great example of why generations continue to pursue their education at PSC. She is a veteran that suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. After she earned her AA in Education from Eastern West Virginia Technical Center, she furthered her education at PSC. While a student, she utilized the Veteran’s Lounge. PTSD makes it hard for her to be around large numbers of people for long periods of time. After the lounge was opened, she could be in a smaller space around people who understood how she felt.
Another important person in my decision to attend PSC was my uncle, Michael Mongold. Since I was a little girl, I have always looked at his accomplishments in admiration. He started his engineering degree at PSC. Like me, he commuted everyday to attend his classes. He eventually transferred to WVU to finish his engineering degree. He joined the Reserved Officer Training Corps (ROTC), which helped him achieve his dream of joining the Air Force as an officer and pilot after his graduation. I plan to follow in his footsteps with a different degree.
I decided as a high school freshman that I wanted to pursue a degree in public relations. I am currently attending PSC as a journalism major with the hopes of completing my bachelor’s degree in public relations at WVU. Later in life, I hope to inspire the younger generations of my family to continue this legacy.