When Nicole Schultz began classes at Globe University-Wausau on the first day the campus opened, she knew that she was getting the education she needed to start a new career in massage therapy. She did not expect her life to change in many other ways.In her first quarter, Nikki found herself in Swedish Massage along with another new student, Evan Napper. At first, they didn’t talk a lot, but eventually, Nikki asked him to be her partner in class. And that made all the difference. Once they started talking in class, the conversation never ended.
Evan and Nikki quickly became friends and developed a sense of trust and confidence in each other. Both were involved in other relationships that were not working out, and in each other, they found a sounding board and a source of understanding. One night, they spent hours in the parking lot talking with each other—until about 3 a.m.! By the end of their first quarter, they were dating.
On January 11, 2011, they were engaged and planning a wedding. Almost immediately, they set a date for August 11, 2012, but Nikki’s cousin stole the date and they ended up tying the knot on the 18th instead. Original plans included a wedding on the Globe-Wausau campus, but sadly, those plans also changed.
By that time, both Nikki and Evan had graduated from the massage therapy program—and both had returned. Evan enrolled in our business program, and Nikki enrolled in the accounting program. They have talked about opening a spa together. Evan has joked about Nikki offering a tax service at tax time, and her customers could head over to the spa after they find out how much they owe.
Evan graduated for a second time in September of 2012, but is still in school. He is getting a bachelor’s in human biology with the intention to ultimately pursue either physical or occupational therapy. Nikki will graduate in June. They have moved to Green Bay, and Nikki is actively interviewing. She hopes to pursue both massage and accounting, perhaps practicing massage full-time with a part-time accounting job in addition.
When Globe-Wausau’s doors first opened in April of 2010 and Nikki walked through them, she had a plan in mind. What she is leaving with this June three years later is very different. She is now Nikki Napper, she has a husband and a stepdaughter, a new home, and hopes to expand their family—and, soon, a degree in a subject she would never have imagined. As Nikki puts it, accounting had never even crossed her mind.
The lesson from all of this? Life is constantly offering new possibilities and new opportunities. Keep your eyes and your heart open to them. Don’t focus so much on where you are that you can’t see new paths to travel, because there is always a path to take. And always keep growing.