ELYRIA, Ohio, May 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — In honor of Lorain County Community College’s graduating class of 2021, LCCC installed an innovative tribute that celebrates each student’s resilient journey to become a college graduate. Twenty-one full sized doors line a grassy median stretching nearly 450 feet – longer than a football field. Every propped-open door bears a different word, symbolizing the unique journey each LCCC student took to reach graduation day. By walking through the door, students not only found the right opportunity on LCCC’s campus, but the support and confidence to lead them into the next chapter of their lives.
Every door includes an augmented reality video that shares the personal story of a graduate from each academic program. These 21 custom videos feature 25 members of the class of 2021 who appear to enter their door in unique ways when viewers scan a QR code on every door.
«The Doors of Opportunity honor the courage the class of 2021 demonstrated to achieve their academic goals,» said LCCC President Marcia J. Ballinger, Ph.D. «Many of our students faced incredible challenges throughout their journey and yet they persevered to become college graduates – perhaps during the most challenging years of their lives.»
The graduating class includes 1,854 LCCC graduates earning 2,234 degrees or certificates, and an additional 365 graduates earning associate, bachelor’s or master’s degrees through LCCC’s University Partnership – the largest class in the 25-year history of the program. The class of 2021 also includes 94 students who are earning an associate degree during the same year that they are graduating from high school through the Lorain County Early College High School and College Credit Plus programs.
The 21 doors also represent the depth of academic opportunities LCCC provides its students by offering more than 100 programs, including a University Partnership providing bachelor’s and master’s degrees, high-school dual enrollment options, and short-term training certificates.
Aidan Bundy — a first-generation college graduate who earned his Associate of Applied Business in Computer Information Systems Software Development — says his story can be encompassed in one word: serve. Bundy wants to work in software and gaming development to help others find joy through games, similar to how he brightens the spirits of children in local hospitals through Heroes United, an organization with volunteers who dress as superheroes and visit patients.
«Seeing children’s faces light up and all of their worries go away when they see their favorite superhero makes all the difference to the children during their darkest times,» Bundy says. «I love helping people in any way I can and using my love for programming to bring people joy through games would be my ideal career.»
On a door boasting the word «achieve» is the story of Akua Agyemang, Coca-Cola Academic Team Gold Scholar and member of the All-Ohio First Academic Team. Agyemang earned an Associate of Science degree with a 4.0 grade point average and plans to transfer to a four-year university to earn a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry before attending medical school to become an obstetrician-gynecologist.
«LCCC has allowed me the opportunity to collaborate with bright students and faculty members who share a passion for utilizing their intellectual talents to help others, as well as the privilege to work closely with those who share the same values and passions as myself,» she says.
Ballinger says that while the single row of doors symbolizes the commonality among a united graduating class, each door brings to life the unique path a student takes to reach this day.
«A one-size-fits-all approach to education no longer works in today’s world,» Ballinger says. «So LCCC meets our students where they are in life to help them reach their academic goals. And today, our graduates are walking through that door, toward the opportunities that lie ahead.»
The Doors of Opportunity display will be open for viewing daily through May 23. Visitors are encouraged to bring their smart phones to interact with the doors, take photos, and share on social media using #LoraincccGrad and #LCCCProud.
Learn more about the LCCC commencement and celebrate the graduates at commencement.lorainccc.edu.
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SOURCE Lorain County Community College