Daryle Mindeman was sixteen when he discovered Unbound (then CollegePlus) in 2011. At that point, he was busy pursuing scholarships to offset the substantial cost of college, and exploring the idea of an engineering degree. Amidst all this, a friend told him about Unbound and offered some bait: “If you enroll, you’ll get a free iPad.” After a single call with Jonathan Brush, Daryle enrolled.
Why did Daryle enroll in Unbound? The answer: flexibility and the opportunity to earn his degree quickly. Unbound offered both. Daryle graduated in 2015. Though the Unbound Community was small at the time Daryle joined (late 2014), he is still involved to this day and has served as an intern, CP ambassador, EC leader, and core member of the #relatable team.
What were you pursuing prior to Unbound?
I was involved in higher education and seeking an engineering degree. I didn’t have experience, but was following the advice from career path surveys. Also, basketball was always a part of my life that I enjoyed. I was looking at a sports program that made you recognizable to colleges in order to receive basketball scholarships, but I turned away from that path when I found out that they tried to hide the cost of the program from students.
How has the Unbound community impacted you?
When I led Empower Calls, I learned how to relate to people online (both introverts and extroverts). The people taught me how to be a better leader. Knowing so many people from across the world has given me an appreciation for them. We get to experience the world through the eyes of people we know. I was able to learn a whole lot of business with the people on the internet. Being a CP Ambassador, those skills were the biggest thing that helped me put myself out there. In all, this community has taught me so much.
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What has Unbound enabled you to do?
- Enabled to move: during my time with Unbound I was able to move across the country from Virginia to North Dakota.
- Enabled to be with family: I was able to put courses on hold when my family needed support.
- Enabled to travel often.
- Enabled to work: When I was seventeen, I worked a job at an oil field warehouse. I have been able to use my degree to start a coffee shop, Bittybean.
I went into Unbound thinking it would take me two years to finish my degree, but with my life, it took four. I had the freedom to work at any pace I wanted with Unbound, so I didn’t have to pour all my time into my school. With that flexibility, I was able to both work and pursue my degree.
But in the end, don’t overuse your freedom. Work hard. Being Unbound is an incredible opportunity to grow.
Hannah Linde is the former Student Community Coordinator & Marketing Manager for Unbound Student Life. She loves people, hiking, and learning, but most importantly loves raising her two little boys — Clarke and Ollie. She is a 2016 Unbound Alumna with a BSBA in Project Management from Liberty University and passionate about the Unbound community.