Lacaron Glenn

Greenville Technical College

"I liked that I could measure my accomplishments in small doses…. I’ve consistently had something to show for my schooling, and that’s kept me motivated to keep getting the next thing."

Confession: We enjoy talking to every student we interview.

But dang if Lacaron Glenn doesn’t bring an energy and joy that is contagious! It’s easy to see why her adult children admire her, her cosmetology clients confide in her, her Greenville Tech peers gravitate toward her, and her great big God must be especially fond of her. Check out her story of curve balls and happy accidents – or as she would say, of God’s perfect plan for her life. And believe her when she says, “I can’t make this stuff up!”

You graduated from high school in 1996. What have you been up to since then?

I actually attempted to go to Greenville Tech immediately after graduation. But I was a single parent, had a full-time job, no transportation, and I just couldn’t do it. So I had to drop out.

Fortunately, I had gotten a cosmetology license back when I was a teen mom, and that’s mostly what I’ve been doing over the years.

But I’ve also worked in the afterschool and teen programs at Greenville County Rec. And I was hoping to volunteer at Christian Learning Center, maybe as a teacher’s assistant or janitor or something. But when they found out I had a CDL license, they said, “We want you to be our bus driver – and we’ll pay you!”

I tell you, God has a sense of humor because I started off trying to volunteer, but He ended up giving me a job. Sometimes, I don’t always understand how He works. And it’s not always easy. But as long I can see His hand in my life, it’s a blessing.

You also credit God with calling you back to Greenville Tech. How did that happen?

So I hardly ever watch tv, right? But I had some downtime, and I was watching a Netflix documentary called Mully. It’s about a man from the slums of Nairobi, Africa. His parents abandoned him in the bush when he was 6 years old, and he lived on the streets for years after that, stealing to survive. When he was a teenager, somebody invited him to church, and he got saved. From there, he just kept moving up. He had all these different businesses and became a multimillionaire. But God called him to go help orphans. And he created Mully Children’s Family, teaching them to cultivate the land, go to college, keep progressing.

I saw that and thought, Wow! Look at what God is using this man to do. Lord, I am not even skimming the surface of what You could do in my life. Right then, God put on my heart that I could provide financial help to people doing non-profit ministry work. Sometimes they don’t know the business end of things, and they get taken advantage of. And I want to help.

So you leapt right in?

Actually, I started making excuses! I don’t have money to go to school. I don’t even have a laptop! I haven’t been in school for years. I’ll be the old lady in class with a bunch of babies.

And it was like the Holy Spirit said, “Sign up.”

Now who was I going to listen to – the fearful girl inside of me, or the God of the universe?!

So I went on and enrolled. And now I’ve graduated! I even got my little gold tassel for being an Honors graduate. And my 89-year-old grandmother was able to attend. How blessed am I to have a grandmother still living who could do that?

As a first-generation college graduate, you no doubt made her very proud! But let’s back up for a minute. Why Greenville Tech?

I was thinking about location. Greenville Tech is about three minutes from my house and five minutes from my job, so if I needed to run to work after class, it was easy to do so.

I also liked that I could measure my accomplishments in small doses. I got my Small Business Accounting Certificate after one year. Then after two years, I got my associate degree. From here, maybe I can go on to Anderson University and get my bachelor’s degree. I’ve consistently had something to show for my schooling, and that’s kept me motivated to keep getting the next thing.

And I knew that Greenville Tech would be less expensive than enrolling at a university. When I first started, there was no free tuition. I did get financial aid, but free tuition didn’t start until the next semester. Sometimes I think we want God to act first, and then we go. But no – we go, and He helps us during the going. I feel like God prompted me to go at just the right time.

Cosmetology and accounting are two very different skill sets…

They are. I never would’ve considered myself a numbers person – especially when I was in MAT 105 – Intro to College Algebra. That class kicked my natural-born you-know-what! But that was algebra, and the more I took accounting classes, the more I learned that accounting is not so much about numbers – don’t get me wrong, the numbers are important, and you want to get them right – but it’s more about organizing the numbers, figuring out their locations in a business, where to debit or credit a number.

We do it every day when we run our household. We have money coming in from our work and money going out for various things and we just have to know where and how much to put to utilities, healthcare, groceries, education, gym memberships, etc.

So when I changed the way I thought about accounting, I was really able to enjoy it.

What about that voice in the back of your head telling you that you would be “the old lady in class with a bunch of babies”?

I never listened to that voice again! The blessing of being my age is that you have more wisdom to do life patiently because you already did all the quick stuff that didn’t get you anywhere.

I remember one of those little babies telling me she wanted to drop her COL 105 class halfway through the semester because she couldn’t keep up in a hard class. But I talked to her about time management, about not spending so much time scrolling through TikTok, about not messing up her GPA.

She told me later that she decided not to drop the class, and that did my heart so much good! And I’m pretty sure if somebody’s mama could’ve heard me talk to their children, they would have been like, “Thank you! I’ve been trying to tell them that forever, but they won’t listen to me.” But because I was their peer, they would listen to me.

On the flip side of that, I also had a 19-year-old buddy who had a good accounting mind and was so quick with numbers. We worked together and helped each other, and thank God for him!

So regardless of age, everybody’s a student, and that’s how we see each other.