As our leaders contemplate education policies that will impact students across the nation, much of the focus has shifted to community colleges. But in February 2015, this national conversation suddenly became personal to me when President Barack Obama visited a place near-and-dear to my heart: Ivy Tech Community College.
"The lower cost of attending Ivy Tech allowed me to pursue my education. But there's more to it than that."
Ivy Tech provided the perfect venue for the President to speak about the role of education and how it impacts our economy. What Ivy Tech provided me, was the perfect venue to start my college career.
Ivy Tech provided the perfect venue for the President.
It’s well known that one of the biggest benefits of attending a community college is the cost-savings relative to attending a traditional four-year institution.
It’s true, the much lower cost of attending Ivy Tech allowed me to pursue my education. But there’s more to it than that.
"Community college truly was instrumental in reshaping my life."
The President’s speech emphasized how two-year institutions are a key tool in creating higher paying jobs and building a foundation for self-improvement. His words made me reflect on my own journey.
I had no idea that community college would have such a strong impact.
Community college truly was instrumental in reshaping my life, as circumstances hindered my previous plans. It allowed me to take control of my own fate and choose the direction of my future, using education as my vehicle.
At Ivy Tech, I wasn’t the only student overcoming difficult circumstances. It was truly inspiring to see classmates juggle school, work, and a family life, all to create something better for themselves and the ones they love.
"The transformational promise of education is real."
Though I always knew I would eventually continue my education at a four-year institution, I had no idea that community college would have such a strong impact on me. By chance, I ended up in the then-newly-formed American Honors program, which led to experiences I never considered before.
I ended up in the then-newly-formed American Honors program.
As I sit here just months before finishing my bachelor’s degree, with a wonderful job opportunity waiting upon graduation, I reflect on all of the things that led me to this point.
The role community college has played in my life cannot be understated. So, as you listen to the national conversation about community college, know this: the transformational promise of education is real, and for many people, community college is the key.