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A Bit Above: My NWTC Story


Remember the last semester of college when the only thing that stood between you and your new career was a piece of paper? I remember it like it was yesterday, because the college I attended did something for me that was above anything a student could ask for.
 
At the end of my third semester at NWTC, I had signed up for all of my classes except one. This class was particularly special because I realized that it was only offered at the Green Bay Campus and I had been attending the Marinette Campus for all of my classes. At the time, I was terrified because my plate was already full from work and schoolwork. I was taking 18 credits, working 24 hours a week with 3 hours of commuting a week, and trying to maintain my 4.0 grade point average.

I remained calm and decided to go and have a discussion with the Dean of the Marinette campus. She told me that she would look into this immediately and see what she could do for me. One week later, I met with Julie Ebben-Matzke, the Associate Dean of Business & Information Technology, and she explained that the class was not offered in Marinette due to lack of students. I was immediately crushed as this was going to add two more hours of commuting to my already full schedule. She then looked at me and with a big smile and said “…But because you have been working so hard and doing such a great job, I am going to make an exception for you and run the class.”
 
I will never forget that day. I have never heard of ANY school doing something like this for one student. After the semester, the Associate Dean of Business & Information Technology drove an hour each way to come watch me walk across the stage and celebrate with me on the day of graduation. To this day I am still grateful that Northeast Wisconsin Technical College was the school I chose because they truly put student success at the top of their priority list.
 
Tom

ABOUT THE EXPERT
Tom VanGaal was an outstanding IT student in the College of Business at NWTC-Marinette. He went on to be an outstanding NWTC graduate and an Associate Programmer in NWTC's Informational and Instructional Technology department!

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