I have been turning over idea after idea for this column over the past week. Nothing seemed worth rambling to the public about until I attended my first class of my fourth semester at Elizabethtown Community and Technical College. It was then I realized how thankful I am that I let my parents talk me into going to school there.
Throughout my high school career, I spent many nights looking into the depths of colleges and major programs, even though I had already been dead set on fleeing off to Western Kentucky University and studying Journalism. Every now and then I would change my mind, but it always came back to that pairing. As my senior year progressed, my parents would consistently bring up the idea of my attending community college, and, as I’ve already mentioned, they wore me down.
There are obvious and practical reasons as to why community college is the way to go (at least in the beginning) in the community versus university toss up. First of all, there’s money. I am currently in my fourth semester of college, and I have yet to gain a terrifying student loan. Definitely a plus. I also still live at home with my parents thus saving money that would have been spent on housing and food. Another point to be made is the class size. Every class I’ve taken has had no more than 30 students, allowing more one-on-one time with my professors and a lot less distraction during instruction.
The reasons I am grateful, however, run much deeper than practicality. Over the past two years, my relationships with my friends, my family, and myself have strengthened much greater than I could have achieved had I been living an hour away, only coming home a couple of times a month. I’ve met incredible professors who made me question the world around me, and that is something I can carry with me for the rest of my life. I’ve also been given a great opportunity in regards to this job, something that I definitely couldn’t have done had I moved away. I am learning every day why I am where I am, but I am thankful that the direction takes root in Grayson County.
The shenanigans I’ve gotten into with my best friends, watching my brother go through high school, and figuring out (for now!) what direction I want my life to go in mean more to me than jumping head first into the proverbial college experience. One day I’ll have to attend a larger school to further my education, but when I do, I’ll be standing on a much stronger foundation.