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Graduate Essays - Kip Kane: Though the journey was difficult, I learned I am stronger than I know

Graduation Cap

A few ECC graduates share what this achievement means to them

Tags: Commencement | Graduation Essays
Published 05/15/2023
Elgin Community College Spring 2023 graduate Kip Kane

Elgin Community College Spring 2023 graduate Kip Kane

In the fall semester of my senior year of high school, I took on one of the hardest challenges of my life. My school offered a dual-credit program where I could simultaneously work on my high school diploma and an associate degree from Elgin Community College. I saw an opportunity to get ahead and save a lot of money. Though the journey was difficult, I learned I am stronger than I give myself credit for.

I started taking college courses at ECC in August 2021, and a unique set of doors opened. I could attend all high school activities, but I could also attend all of the events ECC hosted. I was getting the best of both worlds!

However, around November, I started falling behind. My grades slipped, and executive dysfunction held me back immensely. I’d been a high-ranked student since elementary school, and I could not accept that I was struggling and fell into a deep depression.

Then I realized something crucial: My ultimate passion is writing. I'm creative, crafting endless worlds and complex characters. I care so much about the characters I’ve made and want them to live up to their full potential. I realized I was the only person who could tell their stories, so I had to live up to my full potential. 

With lots of hard work, I dug out of that awful hole and ended with a near-perfect GPA. I joined the student newspaper, the Observer, contributing content as part of our award-winning staff. That experience reaffirmed that storytelling is my path.

Now I know I can take on the world, and I’ll always bring the worlds I make with me.

Kip Kane, St. Charles

Associate in Arts

Visit the ECC Graduate Essays webpage for more graduate stories.