In December the holiday spirit grabbed us and we got in the giving mood. So we put together a little contest here on the blog, inviting you to tell us what the “gift of education” means to you and your family.
Of the 90 amazing responses we received, we had an Internet random-number generator pick 10 winners to get some WGU merchandise. And we were really, really glad that we decided to choose winners at random—because if the winner selection was based on the quality of responses, we’d be spending all of January and into February mailing out 90 prizes.
So what better way to wrap up the holiday season and kick off the new year than with a recap of some of the standout responses. These are direct quotes from WGU students and alumni, readers of The Night Owl, and they show the diversity of what an online university education means in the lives of WGU students as well as the eloquence, passion, creativity, and generosity of the WGU student body and alumni community.
We told you winners would be selected at random. All you had to do to enter was leave a simple comment—a word or two, without any thought going into it, would have been enough. But everyone who entered went well beyond that. So, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for your insightful answers, your commitment to your education, and being part of the WGU story!
And now, here’s what you had to say. (We encourage you to go check out the original post and read all the comments!)
Traci: WGU has given me the gift of believing in myself!
Robert: WGU gave me the gift of opportunity—an affordable education that I have been able to carry with me from New York to Georgia to Germany to Afghanistan. The things I learned and the certifications I've already earned along the way gave me the ability to change fields into one that was previously not an option.
Christine: I couldn’t think of anything I wanted for me for Christmas but yes there is one gift I am giving myself and that is to be able to have the goal of getting my BSN in 2013. That is an awesome gift to me that might just benefit others, making me a better, broader (more educated, not fatter) nurse!
Phil: My WGU education will give me the chance to go back to Pine Ridge and help make life better on the reservation for my people.
Julie: WGU has given me the gift of joy and peace. I am finally in a career that I love. Teaching rewards me every day with the looks and comments from children that I am blessed to spend my days with.
Jenelle: This beautiful gift has brought to my home the value of an education. My children now include college in their future plans!
AJ: WGU gave me the gift of getting out of a job I hated and getting an education to get a job that I will love.
Brandy: Gifts are things that are given without expecting anything in return; WGU hasn't given me anything they didn't expect me to earn. WGU is special because it provides each one of us the opportunity to shine.
Brenda: WGU has given me the chance to once again use my knowledge and skills, give something back to society and to reclaim my dream of nursing.
Rebecca: WGU has not only given me the chance to get a master's degree, but it has given me the opportunity to move from duty station to duty station with my soon-to-be husband without the hassle of changing schools.
Lisa: The diploma I receive will symbolize so much more than my academic achievement. It will remind me that the seemingly impossible is not insurmountable.
Mary: WGU has given me the opportunity to prove (on paper) that I am competent and driven, without trapping me in a classroom.
Nick: WGU has given me the certainty of knowing I will be prepared for whatever challenges I have ahead. To go to college has always been a goal of mine and something my parents have always wanted for me and now it’s coming true.