Nicole Jordan Williams

Auto loan funder for an
international loan finance company
 

“Earning an associate degree in Business Administration has helped me in so many ways in my job as an auto loan funder. You have to know management, because you’re dealing with dealerships, credit buyers and customers — all three entities in every deal. Accounting and finance come into it, too, because you have to do a lot of math to show proof of income and what percentage of income a person can afford to spend on a car loan.

“I have to make judgment calls: is it a good idea for my company to make a particular loan? I have to have good communication and English skills because I correspond in a lot of e-mails and faxes. My writing ability must communicate what’s needed to explain why we will or won’t fund a loan.”

“Doors just open up for you with a degree. The job I’m in now required a minimum education of an associate degree, but the company hired me after I was just halfway through my degree program because I had already proved that I was serious about my education. The flexible scheduling at Richland really helped as I worked full-time and was also a single mother to my son.

“I was fortunate to be a part of Richland’s Working Wonders program. You have to keep proving yourself to stay in the program, but that’s the best motivation for a student. They check up on you and make sure that you get rewarded for the things you do right, but the program can drop you if you don’t do what you’re supposed to do. They helped me find a licensed day care provider that was open late and helped me do the paperwork so that I could feel good about my son’s day care while I went to school.”

“In my cooperative business management class, I had to set monthly goals for strategies to improve myself, and I really had to focus on what I wanted to accomplish. Since I was already working, my supervisor and teachers got involved to help me succeed. The best part of my education at Richland was the interaction with teachers; I love the one-on-one contact. You can call them or e-mail them — they make time for you, and I love that.

“My son has been my biggest motivation. I want to tell him, ‘Yes, I finished college, so I know you can do it, too.’”

Nicole Jordan earned an associate degree in Business Administration at Richland College in May 2007, completing her degree in two years by going to school straight through the summers. A year earlier, she began working as an auto loan funder for an international loan finance company, where she conducts credit reviews, has customer contact, speaks to dealerships and cuts checks for auto loans. Since she began working in the company’s regular customer service division, she is only one promotion away from her goal position of credit analyst. She is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Phoenix.

Richland College’s Working Wonders program prepares and supports single parents, single pregnant women and displaced homemakers enrolled in one of the college’s technical degree or certificate programs in meeting the challenges of re-entering the workforce. Services include enrollment and registration assistance, assistance in filing financial aid forms, crisis intervention, personal counseling, career exploration, textbook loans and limited child care subsidy. Call 972-238-6259 for more information.