Working his way through college, a young man dreams of a hospitality career Marcel Adams, Maryland

Working his way through college, a young man dreams of a hospitality career


Personalized learning helps a student succeed in math and get a job

photo of Marcel Adams“The only obstacle that I’ve faced in getting an education is a financial one. If I didn’t work all year, I wouldn’t be able to afford a higher education,” disclosed Marcel Adams, a second-year student at Prince George’s Community College.

Marcel has been working since he was a teenager. His first job was as an administrative assistant for a local psychologist, doing filing and scheduling appointments. In his junior and senior years of high school, he did data entry for the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

During the past three summers, Marcel worked at Six Flags America. He has held a variety of positions at the amusement park, starting off in admissions, then moving to sponsorships, and most recently doing market research. He loves working there, and his goal is to “graduate from college and become the marketing director of an amusement park or attraction.”

Marcel was drawn to the hospitality and tourism industry because he likes making guests happy. Describing his work at the amusement park, he said, “I’m there to help people have fun. I really enjoy being able to make a person’s day.”

To achieve his career goal, Marcel knew that he had to get a college degree. So he enrolled in his local community college because it was an affordable way to earn his general education requirements. He is currently working on a general studies degree with a concentration in business administration, and he hopes to transfer to the University of Maryland next year.

As a business student, Marcel was required to take a finite math course. Math is a subject that he has struggled with in the past. “I’m not really a big math person. I’m more of an English person. In high school, math and science were my least favorite classes,” Marcel confided.

But his professor assigned homework in Pearson’s MyMathLab®, a program which personalized learning for Marcel and helped him master the material. The program’s technology can adapt to a student’s performance with the capability of personalizing homework assignments to focus on topics that a student has not yet mastered.

“For me, the most helpful feature of the program was the ‘help me solve this’ function,” Marcel noted. The function gives step-by-step instructions for working through a problem.

“MyMathLab helped out a lot. It provided extra hands-on practice. And our class tests were similar to the quizzes in the program,” Marcel explained. Personalized learning helped Marcel earn a B in the course.

MyMathLab helped out a lot. It provided extra hands-on practice.

In addition to MyMathLab, Marcel used other programs from Pearson that personalized learning, including MyStudentSuccessLab and MyAccountingLab®, in his classes. Because of his positive experiences with these programs, Marcel applied for and got a part-time job as a Pearson Campus Ambassador, providing post-adoption support and performing market research with students and faculty using Pearson products.


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