RCBC student embraces new career trajectory at 53
Tuesday, Mar 03, 2020

Kelly Young

Once upon a time, long ago, a person would remain at the same job until retirement and reap the reward of a generous pension and a gold watch (or something monogrammed). For most people, however, that simply isn’t the reality today. As the workplace continues to evolve with the advent of new technologies, some positions become obsolete, while others require a return to college to update skills. 

As a result, it’s more common to see “non-traditional” students on college campuses. This category most often refers to students over the age of 24, though it can also cover other defining characteristics such as background, level of employment and enrollment in non-degree programs. 

Kelly Young, of Mount Laurel, fits the non-traditional mold. A Business Administration major, Young enrolled at Rowan College at Burlington County after having been self-employed for 25 years, 15 of which as a real estate agent. 

“I have been in business my whole life, and I think women in business have come a long way. I love working with people and marketing to determine what is going to appeal to consumers, really help them and implement the plan,” Young said. 

Kelly decided to return to school due to the mercurial nature of real estate and becoming single after a lengthy marriage. Although she is able to choose her own hours as an agent for Keller Williams in Marlton, it’s difficult to work on commission only and to dedicate months to a single deal that could fall flat. After completing her studies at RCBC, she plans to earn her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business. Her ultimate goal, however, is to branch out and enter the non-profit sector, possibly within a Human Resources role, while also maintaining her real estate license. 

“I would love to work for a company that is making a difference in our society and our environment,” Young said. “I want to improve others’ lives with whatever I do business-wise, and I’d like to assume a more hands-on role where I can interface with people on a more personal level.” 

Beyond business, Young enjoys theater and music. She performed in the Pennsauken Alliance for the Performing Arts (PAPA) and currently participates in RCBC’s musical theatre (Shrek: The Musical), where she is 30 years older than most of the students. She is also a member of RCBC’s National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS). Young attends Fellowship Community Church in Mount Laurel, where she helps with the children’s ministry, food pantry, nativity and is preparing for her role in their Easter musical “Bend the Knee.” 

Surrounded by a family of military members, Young is a U.S. Air Force enthusiast; all three of her children have served several years both nationally and internationally. Her son-in-law also serves in the Air Force, which is where her daughter met him. Additionally, Young’s niece joined the Army last year, and another niece is training in boot camp for the Navy. Kelly is a member of several military mom groups, where members support each other, as they work toward the common goal of helping their children. 

On a more personal level, Young grew up in Pennsauken and moved to Mount Laurel two years ago to care for her now 81-year-old father. This is where she discovered RCBC and the flexibility offered through their online classes to accommodate her busy schedule. 

Whatever the future holds, Kelly looks forward to building a new skillset and forging a new path for herself in spite of her age. After all, she says “age is only a number.” 

Kelly’s story is an installment of Behind the Baron, a series that shares real stories from real RCBC students and alumni. Anyone interested in being featured can contact rcbcnews@rcbc.edu. To follow along on social media, use #BehindtheBaron.