Coming off of a season of uncertainty, many football players were able to rejoice in signing day, a culmination of their successes at the college on the field that helped pave a way to the future. Chalking up almost 30 players going to four-year universities to continue to play and learn with the experience of College of DuPage under their belts.
While only a handful of the students who attend the college participate in sports, it would be fair to say that everyone who walks through the college is molded in some way by the experiences and opportunities that the college offers.
Many call the college a back-up plan or a junior college, often in an attempt to discredit the institution or those that attend and while in a joking matter or not, it should be avoided.
Whether or not this college was a first choice for students, putting it or yourself down in any way is ridiculous. While the college might not offer dorms or the “college experience” that has been fetishized through pop culture, what it offers is opportunity; an opportunity that wouldn’t be there without the college in place.
No story is the same, and it shows through the student population at the college. Whether financial, academic or any other medley of reasons, there’s a place for everyone. Following the words of Stephen Stills as he penned his 1970 Billboard chart hit, “if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with”.
If you embrace the college for what it is, gather as many experiences through taking those opportunities afforded to you, then success will follow. While the college might not be endless weekend keggers, huge rallies and sneaking into giant lecture halls without getting caught, it is an education at a fraction of the cost of a university and offers a lot of flexibility that living on large campus in a cornfield doesn’t offer. The experience you have is ultimately up to you and the choices you make.
Whether you are moving towards transferring to a university, getting a certificate or degree from the college or trying to figure out your next move in the great chess game that is life, remember the positives and experiences that wouldn’t have been possible without the college, such as good experiences with teachers, the facilities or anything else. As Kanye West shared with the world in 2007, “everything I’m not, made me everything I am.”