The Hub Convocation 2020: Jennifer Boileau, BA
#AthaU20 Grads

Convocation 2020: Jennifer Boileau, BA

By: Jennifer Boileau

A farm girl from Northern Alberta (High Prairie), Jennifer Boileau decided to pursue her studies at Athabasca University, as she was so far away from a major educational hub. She now lives in Beaumont, Alberta with her husband Jeff and their one-year-old daughter, Poppy. She spends her days with her daughter going outside as much as possible, staying active, and baking to balance it all out. She is looking forward to continuing her studies in the near future and completing a Master of Counselling degree after she enjoys watching her daughter grow up a little bit longer.

To celebrate #AthaU20 Convocation, we are profiling some of AU’s grads. The team at AU is so proud of everything they have accomplished and we are excited to celebrate each one of our graduates leading up to convocation and beyond!

Read on to learn more about Jennifer Boileau’s story and her AU journey through the Bachelor of Arts program.

Athabasca University Shield

Athabasca University News

Why did you choose AU?

I began studying at AU when I was living in northern Alberta (near High Prairie) where the closest post-secondary institution for my degree was over two hours away. Although I chose AU because it was one of my only options at that point, when I moved to Edmonton I enjoyed taking courses online through AU so much that I decided to continue my studies at AU instead of going to a brick-and-mortar school. I’ve always been the type of learner who needs to take their time, and so the ability to go at my own pace and spend more time on areas that needed more clarification was very beneficial to my learning. Being able to wear pyjamas all day didn’t hurt either!

Jennifer Boileau

Athabasca University Shield

Athabasca University News

Tell us about the people who have supported you throughout your journey at AU?

My husband, Jeff, has always been very supportive. Over the past several years as I’ve worked towards getting my bachelors degree, he’d always make sure that the house was clean and supper was made on those days where I was trying to finish an essay, or study for an upcoming exam. Aware of my proclivity to procrastination, he would consistently remind me of looming time frames and the importance of getting ahead on my assignments. On exam days, he would make me breakfast and bring it into the bedroom for me so I wouldn’t have to take a break from my last minute studying; most times he would drive me to downtown Edmonton, and wait for me as I took my exam so that I could study as we drove and not have to worry about driving or parking. I remember one time learning about structures in the brain in my cognitive psychology class and he made up a little song about the basal ganglia because it was the one structure I just couldn’t seem to remember. Now I find myself singing that to every once in a while!

Another person who helped me, especially near the end of my degree, was my mom. When my firstborn came earlier than expected, my mom came and took care of her during the day while I worked on my studies and completed my last exam.

Jennifer Boileau

Athabasca University Shield

Athabasca University News

Tell us about a time that the flexibility of AU helped you overcome a challenge.

As I was getting towards the end of my degree, we found out we were expecting! I had it all planned out that I would finish my studies a couple months before our baby girl arrived, however due to some complications during the pregnancy, I was quite behind. Those working behind the scenes at AU we’re very helpful during this time and I was able to have two extensions with late notice and the fees waived. The day my daughter was born I was scheduled to have my final exam for my final class, motherhood in the real world! Having my daughter that day was about as real as motherhood can get! When I told the doctor about this, she laughed at the irony of the situation and wrote me a doctors note to be excused from the exam if it was needed. When my husband called AU to cancel my exam, they were very understanding and even helped me rebook the exam at a later date, so that I could write it at home instead of going downtown and waived the exam fees for me.

Jennifer Boileau

Athabasca University Shield

Athabasca University News

My personal journey landed me here, at AU, but it certainly doesn’t stop now. My future is …

My journey doesn’t end here, my goal is to complete my masters degree in counselling so that I can become a registered psychologist and counsel others.

Jennifer Boileau

Published:
  • September 21, 2020
Guest Blog from:
Jennifer Boileau