Spouses Organization Assists with Transition to Sint Maarten

June 11, 2011

It’s six in the morning, and Cheyenne McGlue is busy studying for one of her Emergency Management and Disaster Planning classes. She’s up early so she can finish some schoolwork before her two rambunctious boys, Dillon, 11, and Ronan, 8, wake up.

Cheyenne tries to work in advance as much as she can and sends her assignments in early because she’s juggling a busy life.

On top of her own schoolwork, she’s in charge of her children’s education. She home schools her sons and also helps keep up the house while her husband, Michael, studies at the American University of the Caribbean, School of Medicine (AUC).

“During the semesters I usually do some work every day – helps to keep on top of it,” said Cheyenne, who lives in St. Maarten with her family.

Cheyenne’s story is similar to that of many others who have decided to join their spouses or significant others away from home during medical school.

“It’s a challenge, but it works out OK,” – she said, especially since she and the kids get the chance to provide a positive support system for Michael as he makes his way through the Medical Sciences curriculum at AUC.

Before moving to St. Maarten, Cheyenne found support from AUC’s Spouses Organization (SO), a group that serves as the foremost resource for students and their loved ones. As part of the network, families receive guidance and support before their move, as well as assistance to adjusting to life on the island.

“The Spouses Organization is your first link to the island,” said Cheyenne. “It’s a great way to get people going and planning. When you’re here, everyone gets together and does things – it’s a great support system.”

Jackie Rouff, whose husband Mark is also a student at AUC, is an active member of the SO. She and Mark married in 2009, and moved to St. Maarten from Arizona in early 2011.

Before the move, Jackie reached out to the SO and inquired about life on the island. She was paired with a sponsor, a service offered to any incoming spouse or significant other.

“I was feeling a bit overwhelmed before coming to the island and I wasn’t sure what to expect or who to ask questions to,” said Jackie. “I emailed the organization and they set me up with a sponsor, Jamie Grove, and she helped me out so much!”

The transition was a smooth one, Jackie said, but she got antsy after a few weeks of being out of work.

In Arizona, she worked as an enrollment advisor for the University of Phoenix and also owned a children’s fitness center, which she sold before her move.

Jackie has her bachelor’s degrees from Arizona State University in Child Development and her master’s in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix and currently works part-time at one of the local schools in St. Maarten.

She privately tutors children on different days of the week and sometimes works as a substitute teacher.

The McGlues’ relocation has also been seamless because the family enjoys traveling.

“Michael thought about three main schools – and he wanted to be able to get into an accredited program,” said Cheyenne, who previously worked as an Emergency Medical Technician. “I told him it also had to be somewhere where the family could have fun while he was away. AUC was the best about communicating and getting back and showing interest and caring. They were the first ones to say yes and we said OK.”

Michael and Cheyenne met while both were studying at the University of New Mexico. They moved to Golden, Colo., after Michael got a job there working as a representative for a biotech company.

But the work got monotonous, and Michael wanted to do something more rewarding. Apprehensive at first about going back to school – Michael already had a bachelor’s degree in Communications and a master’s degree in Business and Health Administration – he made the decision to pursue an M.D. after a little pep talk from Cheyenne’s father.

“My dad went to medical school when I was in eighth grade and he had five kids, he was 42,” said Cheyenne. “He told [Michael], well you’re younger than me, go for it.”

After getting accepted to AUC, the McGlues sold their property and moved to St. Maarten.

And Cheyenne is using the island as a learning experience for her sons. She developed her own teaching program with some assistance from the boys’ teachers in Colorado and has incorporated island activities – such as snorkeling – into her lesson plans.

“We do marine life, we do a lot with the weather. Everything that you run into here, you just kind of make it a teaching lesson. You take all those lessons and explore more into them,” said Cheyenne.

She also lets her boys have fun.

Recently, Dillon and Ronan joined the Windy Reefs Surfing Club. When Michael has breaks from school, the family ventures out to the beach and to other parts of the island.

When Mark has down time from school, he and Jackie try to enjoy activities on the French and Dutch side of St. Maarten.

During Mark’s first break, the two snorkeled at Dawn Beach and watched the sunset from Cupecoy Beach. They also dove and snorkeled by Creole Rock, Le Galion and Mullet Beach.

“In March we were able to enjoy Tuesday nights in Grand Case, listening to music and checking out the local vendors,” said Jackie. “We have also been to Arts in the Plaza at Porto Cupecoy and enjoyed meals at several restaurants and earlier, we were actually able to squeeze in a day trip to St. Barts and a day on a catamaran to watch the Regatta.”

Jackie said she enjoys living on the island, but misses family and friends.

She wouldn’t have made a different decision, though.

“We both just wanted to make sure it was the best choice and we both agreed that the only way we were doing this adventure was together.”

Realted Links:


Spouses Organization Assists with Transition to SXM

The AUC Spouses Organization serves as the foremost resource for students and their loved ones.
The AUC Spouses Organization serves as the foremost resource for students and their loved ones.

It’s six in the morning, and Cheyenne McGlue is busy studying for one of her Emergency Management and Disaster Planning classes. She’s up early so she can finish some schoolwork before her two rambunctious boys, Dillon, 11, and Ronan, 8, wake up.

Cheyenne tries to work in advance as much as she can and sends her assignments in early because she’s juggling a busy life.

On top of her own schoolwork, she’s in charge of her children’s education. She home schools her sons and also helps keep up the house while her husband, Michael, studies at the American University of the Caribbean, School of Medicine (AUC).

“During the semesters I usually do some work every day – helps to keep on top of it,” said Cheyenne, who lives in St. Maarten with her family.

Cheyenne’s story is similar to that of many others who have decided to join their spouses or significant others away from home during medical school.

“It’s a challenge, but it works out OK,” – she said, especially since she and the kids get the chance to provide a positive support system for Michael as he makes his way through the Medical Sciences curriculum at AUC.

Before moving to St. Maarten, Cheyenne found support from AUC’s Spouses Organization (SO), a group that serves as the foremost resource for students and their loved ones. As part of the network, families receive guidance and support before their move, as well as assistance to adjusting to life on the island.

“The Spouses Organization is your first link to the island,” said Cheyenne. “It’s a great way to get people going and planning. When you’re here, everyone gets together and does things – it’s a great support system.”

Jackie Rouff, whose husband Mark is also a student at AUC, is an active member of the SO. She and Mark married in 2009, and moved to St. Maarten from Arizona in early 2011.

Before the move, Jackie reached out to the SO and inquired about life on the island. She was paired with a sponsor, a service offered to any incoming spouse or significant other.

“I was feeling a bit overwhelmed before coming to the island and I wasn’t sure what to expect or who to ask questions to,” said Jackie. “I emailed the organization and they set me up with a sponsor, Jamie Grove, and she helped me out so much!”

The transition was a smooth one, Jackie said, but she got antsy after a few weeks of being out of work.

In Arizona, she worked as an enrollment advisor for the University of Phoenix and also owned a children’s fitness center, which she sold before her move.

Jackie has her bachelor’s degrees from Arizona State University in Child Development and her master’s in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix and currently works part-time at one of the local schools in St. Maarten.

She privately tutors children on different days of the week and sometimes works as a substitute teacher.

The McGlues’ relocation has also been seamless because the family enjoys traveling.

“Michael thought about three main schools – and he wanted to be able to get into an accredited program,” said Cheyenne, who previously worked as an Emergency Medical Technician. “I told him it also had to be somewhere where the family could have fun while he was away. AUC was the best about communicating and getting back and showing interest and caring. They were the first ones to say yes and we said OK.”

Michael and Cheyenne met while both were studying at the University of New Mexico. They moved to Golden, Colo., after Michael got a job there working as a representative for a biotech company.

But the work got monotonous, and Michael wanted to do something more rewarding. Apprehensive at first about going back to school – Michael already had a bachelor’s degree in Communications and a master’s degree in Business and Health Administration – he made the decision to pursue an M.D. after a little pep talk from Cheyenne’s father.

“My dad went to medical school when I was in eighth grade and he had five kids, he was 42,” said Cheyenne. “He told [Michael], well you’re younger than me, go for it.”

After getting accepted to AUC, the McGlues sold their property and moved to St. Maarten.

And Cheyenne is using the island as a learning experience for her sons. She developed her own teaching program with some assistance from the boys’ teachers in Colorado and has incorporated island activities – such as snorkeling – into her lesson plans.

“We do marine life, we do a lot with the weather. Everything that you run into here, you just kind of make it a teaching lesson. You take all those lessons and explore more into them,” said Cheyenne.

She also lets her boys have fun.

Recently, Dillon and Ronan joined the Windy Reefs Surfing Club. When Michael has breaks from school, the family ventures out to the beach and to other parts of the island.

When Mark has down time from school, he and Jackie try to enjoy activities on the French and Dutch side of St. Maarten.

During Mark’s first break, the two snorkeled at Dawn Beach and watched the sunset from Cupecoy Beach. They also dove and snorkeled by Creole Rock, Le Galion and Mullet Beach.

“In March we were able to enjoy Tuesday nights in Grand Case, listening to music and checking out the local vendors,” said Jackie. “We have also been to Arts in the Plaza at Porto Cupecoy and enjoyed meals at several restaurants and earlier, we were actually able to squeeze in a day trip to St. Barts and a day on a catamaran to watch the Regatta.”

Jackie said she enjoys living on the island, but misses family and friends.

She wouldn’t have made a different decision, though.

“We both just wanted to make sure it was the best choice and we both agreed that the only way we were doing this adventure was together.”
 

Related Links:

AUC Spouses Organization
Cheyenne McGlue’s blog
Jackie Rouff’s blog
Family Life at AUC
Jamie Grove’s blog