Read some stories FRCC graduates, students, retirees, and employees have shared about their time at FRCC. Want to tell your story?
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I am a disabled student, who has found her community at FRCC. I have been on the Larimer campus since 2012, and have learned so much. With my unique abilities it can take much longer to learn things that other people take for granted, but at FRCC that was ok, and I felt welcomed to learn. I only have one more semester, then I will be transferring to CSU. I have made so many friends along the way, and have even gone to leadership conferences alongside other students and staff. FRCC is simply home.
~Savanah Overturf, Current Student
I started my first college degree program at Metro State College in 1973 and then transferred to FRCC at the Westminster campus in 1981. I completed 56 credits toward a Business Management degree. I was going part-time after the birth of two sons. I continued at the Westminster campus and was fortunate to go to classes during the day while my children were enrolled in the Early Childhood Education preschool center on campus. That center was a great place for my 2 sons to start their schooling.
In 1984, I became ill with a rare form of colon cancer and had to withdraw from FRCC. Fortunately, with the help of a great team of doctors I was cancer free after five years. I began working after that and never got to complete the business degree. However, in 2013, we moved to Fort Collins to be closer to our oldest son and his family, which includes our two grandsons. I decided to go back to school and get a degree in horticulture and landscape technology at the Larimer campus. This program has been great for me and I was able to transfer many of my previous credits toward my degree.
The Horticulture program has many wonderful teachers, many who have helped me persevere in my classes. My Spanish teacher, L. Alberto Gonzalez de la Iglesia, was a great teacher, and was so patient and helpful; my Intro to Soil Science teacher, Teri Gadd, was wonderful!
At my age of 70, I find the idea of life long learning a great way to spend my retirement and the joy I get from what I learn and being able to apply it to my own garden. And teaching my grandchildren the love of plants is a joy! I look forward to finishing my degree! I am grateful for the opportunity to attend FRCC. I would recommend the school to anyone who desires the opportunity to learn at any stage of their lives.
~Teresa Collins, Student
When I enrolled in the horticulture program in 1987, little did I know this would be life changing event for me. I loved the horticulture classes and the program director, Jim O'Shea became a mentor to me. My associates degree opened doors for me that would of been closed. I'm grateful that FRCC gave me the skills to be successful in my horticulture career.
After graduation I migrated towards greenhouse management. I managed the greenhouse programs for both the city of Lakewood and the city of Fort Collins. I also had the privilege of opening 2 new botanic gardens in Colorado. None of this would been possible without my degree from FRCC. 4 years ago I was asked to teach the Greenhouse Management class at FRCC which I agreed to do. Its amazing to see my life come full circle. From a student at FRCC some 30 years ago to an adjunct instructor today, mentoring to the next generation of horticulturist.
~Ted Schaaf, Alumnus and Current Employee
I moved to Fort Collins in 1997 with a bachelor's degree that basically qualified me to deliver pizza. While I valued my 4 year degree, I needed to gain a skill set that would allow me to get a job and earn a better living.
I enrolled in the Automotive Technology program at FRCC Larimer in the fall of 1998 and had a job in the industry within 6 weeks of starting the program. After finishing my degree I became certified as a Master Automotive Technician and worked at various automotive repair facilities in the Fort Collins. I was able to make a great living thanks to the skills and knowledge I gained at Front Range Community College.
Then, after 7 years as an automotive technician, I was interested in applying my knowledge to a different career. I had always wanted to teach and noticed that FRCC had an opening for an automotive instructor. It took me applying and interviewing for a couple of different openings but I eventually got the opportunity to teach and have never looked back. I have been teaching the Concurrent Enrollment (high school) automotive program at FRCC Larimer for nearly 14 years now and still love seeing students learn new skills and succeed in all the ways they want to. It's very rewarding to see students go on to successful careers and know that I had some small part in that.
~Reno Toffoli, Former Student and Current Faculty
I started my college experience at FRCC in 1972. It was actually the North Campus for Community College of Denver and was located in the industrial park around Washington St. in southern Adams County. At first, I was a little intimidated because it did not look like any college I had ever seen. This college was in barracks!
I parked on the street and walked into the building. Although the outside did not look like a college, I knew I was in college as soon as I entered the building. I could not believe it; I was in college!
My first class was Developmental Psychology, which was a good place to start since I worked with preschool children at Head Start. I not only fell in love with the community college system, I fell in love with the community college system. Read more of Teri's story on our blog.
~Teri Sanchez, Alumna and Current FRCC Employee
"It was really a lifetime memory and eternal learning that I have received being here. Presently, I own an e-commerce website and earn pretty much. If I hadn't attended FRCC, I would have not explored myself."
~Mayra Carlson, Former Brighton Center Student
"I spent 30 years at the College. Originally, I was hired in 1971 and worked at the E. 62nd and No. Downing location. My career spanned the expansion of the College into Longmont, Boulder, and Fort Collins. It is important to note that classes were held in a myriad of places including Longmont High School, Fitzsimmons Army Medical Center now Anshetz Medical Center. Other sites included Rocky Flats, Sacred Heart School in Boulder. There were other outreach sites along the Front Range before there were stand alone centers."
~ Mark Boyko, Former Employee
"I had such a great time and learned so much that propelled me into the career i have now - from Architecture (designing homes and commercial buildings) to working for local government (as Construction plans examiner). While i was at FRCC i felt so comfortable that I could have been a lifetime student - I was able to find my joy of learning!"
~ Pamela Bland, 1992 Graduate
"I was on a waiting list in the 1980s and was able to complete all my elective classes prior to starting my nursing classes. My instructors were "tough" but good. We scored in the 90th percentile in state boards. In comparison to today, our classes were small so we were a tight group. I loved all my clinical settings; my favorite was psych at Fitsimmons Army hospital. I took my LPN boards when I completed the first year of nursing & worked as an LPN while I finished the RN program. Being a FRCC alumna, I feel very confident in my skills as a nurse and owe all that I am to the wonderful staff there."
~ Sue Neverve, 1984 Nursing Graduate
"My experience with FRCC has been amazing. It's a place of growth for students and employees. I started with FRCC on Jan 2 2002. At times I have been a student. I spent 8 years employed at the Larimer Campus then relocated to the Westminster Campus. Each day is new as we ban together to support students in being their best and reach their goals. The journey is rewarding along with it's challenges. I'm grateful for the friends I've developed, and teams I've been apart of over the last 16 years. FRCC cares. It's a gem."
~ Vicki Fox, Current Employee
"In an era of big hair and oversized, neon-colored outfits, I entered Front Range Community College for the first time. In contrast to the fashion of the day were the stark and unadorned grey walls and floors of the Westminster Campus. I was a teenager in the 1980s when my sister was taking a computer class at FRCC, the big concrete building that looked the same on the outside as it did inside. One evening I attended class with her, and I recall marveling at the large solar panels above the south-side hallway. Solar heating was a new technology then, and FRCC was among the first buildings I saw with this type of structure."
~ Tina Sauceda, Current Employee
"I had many older credits that I earned at CSU that were collecting dust, so by transferring them in and taking holistic health classes, I was able to fulfill degree requirements and learn about something that I truly love, and still do. Front Range was a very nurturing, supportive environment and the people are top notch. I believe that contributed to graduating sum cum laude, all while working a full time job at CSU."
~ Kerrie Lapoehn, Alumna and Current Employee
"In the spring of 2003, I came to campus to interview. Because it was a job interview, I had bought a new outfit, one I really liked a lot, a brown silk skirt and a coral colored jean jacket. I remember sitting outside the small conference room upstairs in the library, when someone popped out the door. Walking by, this woman said, "Hey, we'll be with you in a moment, but I really like your outfit. "This was my first introduction to Janet White. I went on to interview and have the privilege to work with Janet in the English department. She retired about six years ago, but luckily she still takes on a class or two or a shift in the Writing Center. If you have had the chance to know Janet, you know how she makes you feel: loved, connected, important, and cherished."
~ April Lewandowski, Current Employee
"Front Range Community College has been my home for 17 years. I came to FRCC for a job, but I found a family. The students are inspiring. The faculty and staff alike are welcoming and inclusive."
~ Kathryn Skulley, Current Employee
"I started out at Front Range afraid, alone and feeling pretty worthless. Through the constant help of the advising staff, the Learning Opportunity Center and the unique professors I had the pleasure to learn from I started to come out of my shell. The career advisor Becca helped me realize my abilities and goals. While the academic advisor Karen Daine taught me how to follow those dreams. Brittany Otter and Nancy Elliot helped me understand the accommodations available to students who have disabilities like me as well as helped me ensure I obtained those accommodations. Melissa Martin my Communications professors, saved my family, my marriage and my self-worth through everything she taught me in interpersonal communications."
~ Danielle Jones, Former Student
"FRCC changed my life! I had been in the work world for about 19 years pre-FRCC. I have always been a nerd at heart, but education was not a big thing in my family, actually frowned upon by most.
I started realizing I needed more mentally challenging work in my life (being part of a bigger whole). I also, became the head of my household and needed a better income. I came to FRCC in 1997 as a non-traditional student and graduated with an Associates Applied Science: CIS. The education I received was "top notch" -- the instructors were challenging, thought provoking and caring-- they knew their stuff! After being out of school for 20 years, I surpassed my high school GPA by flying colors, impressing myself. Thanks to all teachers who give there lives to educate!!!"
~ Tamra McEvoy, Current Employee
"Going to Front Range Community College helped me improved on my core courses. The courses I took at Boulder CTEC transferred to Front Range and got me close to a Multimedia degree. In 2012, I was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society! After graduating in 2014, I got a job at a print shop in Longmont called, Ron's Printing Center, working as a graphic designer."
~ Rachel Wrangham, Current Student
"I'm so very thankful to be a part of a growing and diverse community of educators and students! As a busy wife and mom, it was a wonderful feeling returning to the classroom after years of being away, realizing the exceptional quality of learning stayed consistent! The students, faculty, and staff are some of the friendliest, kindest, and hard working people I've met even compared to my professional experiences! There are many colleges and universities to choose from and I'm grateful for choosing FRCC!"
~ Tiffani Smith, Current Student
"I attended FRCC when the campus was made up of mainly mobile trailers located approx at 62nd and Washington. I loved the green industry then and still love it now! My dad had a lot to do with influencing me on what it was to work in the soil, enjoy working outdoors and seeing what the benefits were when you put your mind to it. My time at FRCC was a very impressionable one. I was just out of HS and the college life was intimidating even though I could go home every day. I did however meet a great bunch of teachers, peers and friends that quickly made me feel at ease! "
~ Greg Anderson, Former Graduate