Starting Point 2.0 graduate reflects on lessons learned
by Lindsey Fox, Women’s Fund volunteer
Four years ago, Alex Mischler, a single mother to a 14-month-old son and 9-year-old daughter, captured the hearts of many at the Women’s Fund. Alex was embarking on a new journey in Starting Point 2.0, a partnership program between the Women’s Fund, B.A.B.E.S. Child Abuse Prevention Program, and Fox Valley Technical College, aimed at increasing the life-long economic security of women and their families.
Since she began Starting Point 2.0, Alex has accepted a full-time position at FVTC and graduated with an associate’s degree in administrative professional. She has plans to begin pursuing a bachelor’s degree this fall.
Being a part of Starting Point 2.0 has changed Alex’s mindset. “I am now grounded in my worth as an individual, mother, woman of color, and human being. I am no longer a statistic of stereotype and data. I am a statistical anomaly,” she said.
Through her professional, academic and personal experience, Alex has uncovered a deep passion for equity and inclusion work, and is using her voice and opportunities to advocate for individuals and families of color in her community.
“Starting Point 2.0 was the first time I received equitable support that focused on my individual need. It was the only time I felt the color of my skin was not a barrier to my goals,” she said. “There is still much social change needed at the local level, especially for the underrepresented. My plan is to keep making change that impacts women, young parents, and all groups needing equity.”
With her children now 4 and 12, Alex’s vision for her family’s future is brighter than ever. She continues to embrace the ideals and lifestyle she found through Starting Point 2.0, and to teach her children what they look like does not determine how far they can reach.
Alex’s advice for women who may be looking for their own Starting Point is simple: “Ask yourself, is your life everything you hoped for in this moment? If you cannot happily answer yes, then you have more to lose by not putting yourself first.”