Thursday, February 6, 2014

From Community College to Harvard: Community College Can Take You Anywhere

I'll never forget when my professor told me community college could be a launching point to wherever I wanted to go in my life. 

He was right.

Yesterday I received an invitation interview for a doctoral program at Harvard University. When I got the e-mail I immediately thought of the 18-year-old girl crying in the advising office of her community college, feeling like her life was going nowhere. 

That girl was me. And I'm so thankful for all the people in my life who helped me get here. They not only helped me, but they showed me that no matter where we come from and no matter what level of privilege or adversity we have in our lives - we all need support. We all need mentors. We all need help.

Do not go your college journey alone. It doesn't work. As I wrote in my book, you have the power to build your own support network. Do it, and go far.

Below is the most recent episode of The SKiNNY, which shares vital tips and misconceptions about transferring from community college to a four-year university. If getting a bachelor's degree is your ultimate goal, you won't want to miss this one.

Because community college really can take you anywhere. Set your sights high. 


  1. Isa Adney I share you same thoughts and experience. Just like you I was 18yrs, with tears in my eyes because of a low ACT score and a rejection letter from the University of Illinois. My ACT score said I would be in the low 15% in a Liberal Arts College. After that I didn't even apply for undergrad at the University of Chicago. I was thankful that SXU granted me first year academic probation. But I took that in stride and ended up receiving letters from Yale, Harvard, and University of Penn for their graduate programs before deciding doing my post-grad work at the University of Chicago, which opened the door for me to do research at University of Cambridge/Oxford. I am proof that those standardize scores can't dictate your future opportunities or even going to a community college does mean you aren't smart enough to do well at an ivy-league university. All it takes is determination, good mentors, and opportunities to prove yourself. You can do anything you set your mind to do.

    1. Alexander thank you so much for sharing your story!!! Please e-mail me at as I'd love to learn more and feature your story on the blog! :)

    2. Hi Isa first, congratulations I am so proud of you! But I too have a story to share with you. When I was child I was diagnosed with a learning disability and graduated from high school at the bottom of my class. When I entered Community College I placed in three remedial courses and had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. But I wanted to lose the fear that comes with new challenges so I decided not to ever give up on myself. I studied so much and tackled my education with two jobs and a ton load of extra-curriculum. And being a minority male, first generation college student everything always seemed to be against me but I continued to march on. It has taken me FIVE years to finally finish my three associate degrees in Biology, Health-Services, and Sociology this upcoming May with a 3.71 GPA. And to top it all of I recently received my acceptance letter to University of Pennsylvania and will begin my journey at an Ivy-League in fall 2014. It has been quite a journey and I want everyone to realize that it is possible overcome any insurmountable barriers set to halt your education. My community college experience has literally change my perception of my life from insecurities to confidence.


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