The story of the non-traditional student pursuing his or her degree at an institution of higher learning has played out countless times all over the country.  Although there is a multitude of research on the challenges, struggles and successes of these students, there are few instances in which the essence of these journeys are truly captured. This project is designed to document and share the story of the non-traditional student through visual means and answer the question of what it is like being a Nontraditional Student. This project will also be used as a tool to impact positive policy change for adult learners. 

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Originally started as a blog, AdultSchoolLife is a research project that looks to provide a deeper understanding of the non-traditional student through photography and interviews. 

Adult School Life Overview


Johnson C. Smith University

The Journey

Serving as a pilot study, nontraditional students were interviewed and shared their perspectives on their journey college students at this Historically Black University (HBCU)

Findings were presented at the American Association of Adult and Continuing Educators (AAACE) Conference in 2017 Download/View Presentation here - Audio Files are attached to the presentation)



Ball State University

The Challenges are Real, The Benefits are Priceless

Currently we are conducting research in conjunction with the MA Degree Programs in Adult & Community Education. Graduate Student Doreath Lomax serves as a intern for this project.