“I am humbled to be on this journey and so very grateful to all the people and organizations, like Prosperity Connection that have played a part”
Meet Brandii Palmisano. She moved to the St. Louis area from Orange County, California in 2007. After being offered a great job opportunity by her brother-in-law, she packed up the kids and took a chance on the Midwest. Since establishing roots in St. Louis, she has expanded her family. “I met my husband online shortly after moving here, so I guess this will be home forever since I have learned that folks from St. Louis stay in St. Louis.”
In 2010, Brandii decided to pursue a degree in professional social work. “I always dreamed of being an expert at something and having credentials at the end of my name. I started with one class at St. Louis Community College to see if I would like school and I was hooked!”
Brandii experienced some initial concerns when starting out as an older college student. “I worried when I started this journey that my age would be a detriment to me as I pursued a new field but I have experienced the opposite. The knowledge and wisdom that I bring to social work because of my age has allowed me to touch people that might have been more challenging to younger students.”
Brandii was awarded the Janice Mosby Scholarship in 2011 to help achieve her goals. This scholarship gives adult students $2,500 toward college tuition expenses. “I am humbled to be on this journey and so very grateful to all the people and organizations, like Prosperity Connection that have played a part,” said Brandii. Students must be 23 years or older to be considered. The scholarship program is intended to support scholars who are pursuing their academic goals later in life.
Prosperity Connection exists, in part, to help hardworking students like Brandii get to where they want to be. “I was thrilled to have been awarded The Janice Mosby Scholarship in 2011. The award was helpful to me as I continued my education from the community college to Fontbonne University where I graduated with my Bachelor of Social Work degree in 2014.” Brandii took another important step in her life journey that year. She left the corporate world for good and has not looked back. “I am not only fulfilling my dreams, but I am also in a position to be an effective leader and help those who cannot help themselves. I have learned that I do have gifts to share with others and it is so natural for me to empathize and listen.”
Brandii’s area of specialization is Community Mental Health and she is currently working as a psychiatric therapist in the Behavioral Health Unit at SSM Health, St. Mary’s Hospital. Brandii will also go on to complete her Master of Social Work in 2016.
By: Maryjoyce Gewalt