100 Years, 100 Stories
23 year old Jakob Ganschow says he will always cherish his time at MCC, “I will forever and ever proudly wave the MCC flag and support community colleges.”
When he first enrolled in classed he has no idea where his educational journey was headed.
“I was working a lot of jobs and I really wanted to go to college, but I couldn’t afford to go to college, it was too expensive. So I got a job at UPS. UPS offers tuition assistance to their employees at $1,500 a semester or $3000 a year. That covers full time tuition rate for in-district credits. Which is great, that’s just what I needed. So with that tuition assistance through UPS I was able to start tacking on full credit-hour loads. And then I earned the Board of Trustee’s Scholarship and then I really started packing on credits. I took classes at MCC-Maple Woods and I also took classes at MCC-Blue River in Independence,” explained Ganschow.
He said something clicked and he began to truly enjoy learning.
“My experience here has been great. I love it. I’ve made a lot of good relationships with professors. There are a lot of professors who really care about me and really care about other students.”
He started studying sociology and also got involved in several student groups.
“Phi Theta Kappa is the international honor society for two-year colleges. There are thousands of chapters. The requirements say you have to have a 3.5 GPA at least 12 credit hours and you have to be enrolled. I was inducted last fall. I ran for office and I won vice president and then at the end of the semester I was elected as chapter president. That’s been a really great experience for me. Phi Theta Kappa – They have 4 pillars or 4 hallmarks of Scholarship, Leadership, Fellowship and Service. And they have a lot of great programs designed to help make you a better scholar,” detailed Ganschow.
He says earning the right to graduate is powerful.
“For the first time I feel like I’ve actually earned something I’m really, really proud of. The feeling is completely uplifting. I’ve been glowing a lot, I guess,” said Ganschow.
He says this is only the beginning and plans to earn his Bachelor’s degree. He wants to double major in philosophy and sociology. He says he earned enough scholarship awards to pay 100 percent of his tuition.
Looking toward the future,” in ten year from now I’ll probably still be in school. Hopefully working on my Ph.D., that’s what I’d really like, in sociology. There are a lot of things you can do with sociology. For me, the one thing that really captures my mind more than anything is economic inequality and the radical levels that it exists and the gap that inequality tends to increase, which makes it harder on people in the middle and lower ends of the economic spectrum. If I could do one thing, that’s what I’d like to do. I’d try to find a good solid way to end economic inequality without causing economic destruction” said Ganschow.