Testimonies

College is not out of reach

“Throughout life, you will develop new dreams and aspire to do great things but without the foundation of a quality post-secondary education, whether it be traditional college or technical education, the mountain to success will be harder to climb.”

I was destined for college. Growing up in a family where no one graduated college and only one of my parents had completed their high school education, I knew I wanted to be different. As soon as I graduated high school, I enrolled in a college about an hour away and decided to commute. After three months, I was offered a decent paying job and immediately quit school. During this period, I got married, had kids, and started to feel like my dream of accomplishing college was never going to happen. Even though life was getting in the way, I still had hopes of accomplishing this goal of completing college.

You’re seventeen years old, not sure what you want to do. You’re considering not going to school because you feel like you need a year to figure things out. Try something new, learn something new, discover your passions because it could lead you don’t a path to success. At seventeen, I was going to be the next Chief Marketing Officer for Chick-Fil-A. At 20, I was going to be a District Manager for Verizon Wireless. At 23, I was going to grow my own marketing empire. Throughout life, you will develop new dreams and aspire to do great things but without the foundation of a quality post-secondary education, whether it be traditional college or technical education, the mountain to success will be harder to climb.

Now I’m 31, and my pursuit of knowledge hasn’t stopped. In fact, I just began my doctorate in leadership studies, and now I have a bachelor’s in management, and a master’s in business. My path will not be the same as yours but discovering the first steps of your pathway begins with exploring your passions, skills, and opportunities. Even if you fall a little short, there are so many people rooting for you to succeed so good luck and have fun. The ride is worth it.

Chris Laney, Director of Education & Community Investment for CareerSource Suncoast

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