I’m not sure what it is with me and writing hot-takes lately, but I’m just going to go with it!! My latest for CNN is about the lifelong benefits of community colleges and how attending one shaped my life. My time there, both as a student and then as adviser to the student newspaper (talk about getting to go home again!), has given me so many fond memories!!
And to think, I got the inspiration for the piece from the guy who lives in the White House! That, umm, seems to be a pattern lately, doesn’t it? Anyway, when I heard that he didn’t understand the value of community colleges, I was floored, to say the least. I know so many people who have gone to community colleges and my formative years were spent in those hallowed halls. I still live close to my alma mater and still love going there every once and awhile. These places of higher learning are so much more than just classrooms and teachers and students — they’re life-changers, the place where you form your path or build the foundation of a new one.
Here’s an excerpt of the piece, because, obviously, I could rave about the wonderfulness of community colleges all day long. You know I can’t say enough good things about them…
So what exactly does “community college” mean? Many things to many people. Different things to different people. It means a chance for a single parent who works full-time to take night classes and work toward a degree. It means someone who’s retired can experience the excitement of continuing education classes. It means someone fresh out of high school can save money on tuition and explore their options while taking general education classes at a two-year college.
And I doubt I’d be the writer I am today if it weren’t for the time I spent as a staff writer (and later, editor-in-chief) of my college’s student newspaper. I was able to get hands-on experience in all facets of newspaper production, from writing to interviewing sources to editing to design, as well as learning leadership skills that extended far beyond the classroom.
You can read the full piece here and I’d love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to email me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s chat! And of course, feel free to share my essay on Facebook, Twitter or even your local refrigerator. If you share on Twitter, be sure to tag me @melissablake so we can connect! I can’t wait to hear from you! Love you all… xoxo
[Photo via We Heart It]