I grew up in Watertown, MA, a suburb of Boston. My freshman and sophomore years of high school were at Watertown High, where I was the textbook definition of an underachiever. I believe this frustrated my teachers even more so than with other students because they knew my academic potential.
Long story short, to my dismay, my siblings and I were told by our parents that we had to sell the house (’07-’08 real estate crisis) and we were moving to a town called Gardner, which I did not know existed. Because I had about 25% of the credits that a high school junior should have, I found out I was going to have to start as a freshman at Gardner High. I don’t know why I got so lucky, but after I scoffed at the guidance counselor and was exiting her office, she told me about a program at MWCC called Gateway to College. I decided to apply, performed well on the entrance exams and was miraculously accepted. I ended up graduating with my class in 2009, with 15 credits.
Being in a college environment, even being so young, I thrived and met some amazing professors/mentors that I remain in contact with today. If it were not for MWCC, I would have never graduated high school, even considered going to college, have an Associates Degree, nor would I currently be a junior at Nichols College pursuing a Bachelors in Business Administration with the ultimate goal of also attempting to obtain my MBA and MSA.
MWCC taught me that I could literally achieve any reasonable goal I set, on one condition, you always give it everything you’ve got! And when you think you have, dig deeper and give a little more. As my mentor Dr. Michael Greenwood used to say, “Do you know what the reward for hard work is? More hard work!” Accomplishing goals doesn’t mean you should become complacent, but set higher ones, and you’ll be amazed with what you can accomplish.
About the Author: Timothy Whalen is a 2009 Gateway to College graduate and a 2018 Business Administration Transfer graduate. He currently attends Nichols College for Business Administration.