School did not adhere the initial time for Kelsey Lewis. She was not particularly motivated
to uncover course or interested in her classes, and her grades mirrored that.
The Lake Zurich resident remaining school soon after a calendar year and, using a cue from her entrepreneurial-minded
relatives, started out a pet treatment service. By her late 20s, factors looked Alright on paper – she
had a business, a townhome, a fiancé – but Lewis’ heart wasn’t in it. Her vocation no
for a longer time glad her, the marriage was not especially fulfilling, and she was
suffering from a nonetheless-to-be identified autoimmune problem.
“It was a very low point,” said Lewis, now 30 and a new graduate of Harper Faculty.
“My engagement fell aside, I moved back again in with my mom and dad and I just realized it was
time to do a little something different with my everyday living. I was incredibly conscious of Harper’s popularity
and had talked to adequate people today about their fantastic working experience, so when I resolved to
go back again to school, it experienced to be Harper.”
Lewis figured she’d continue to keep her head down and get in and out. As an incoming adult university student,
she felt intimidated and didn’t foresee connecting with anyone or engaging herself
in the campus group.
Factors did not go in accordance to strategy, nevertheless.
When she arrived in spring 2019, Harper’s school and staff immediately opened her eyes
to what her university expertise could be. Laurie Hoadley, her elementary figures
instructor, influenced Lewis as a woman in the STEM subject and supplied her mentorship.
Assistant Professor Nellie Khalil fostered a resourceful understanding ecosystem and produced
a daylong trip to the Discipline Museum of All-natural Record one of the most memorable ordeals
of her existence. Professor John Garcia aided Lewis investigate submit-Harper possibilities and guided
her as a result of the university application procedure. The list goes on and on.
“I observed a assistance program that served me navigate not just my schooling, but my everyday living,”
Lewis reported. “These people all truly required to support me.”
To her surprise, Lewis also connected with her classmates. She was stunned at the range
of cultures, backgrounds and lifetime activities. 1 team of friends made absolutely sure to examine
in with each individual other every day at the peak of the pandemic when lessons switched to an
on the internet structure.
Lewis joined the honors software, the Phi Theta Kappa honors culture and graduated
in May 2021 with a 4. GPA. She’s headed to Loyola College, where by she options to
pursue anthropology and insignificant in peace, justice and conflict scientific tests. She sees herself
pursuing a humanitarian or federal government place, or probably educating.
She also benefited from Harper’s monetary aid, getting the Amersham Endowment
Scholarship, the Finish Line Grant and crisis resources when the pandemic strike. The
aid helped Lewis prioritize school and commit to succeeding.
“I will glimpse back on the earlier two many years and see Harper as a turning place,” Lewis
explained. “There aren’t enough terms to express my gratitude to absolutely everyone who aided me
together the way.”