Hi everyone, my name is Coy.

The year 2011 was a year of opportunities, challenges, and new experiences. My first semester as a CUNY SPS student greatly expanded my perspectives as I found myself introduced to the vast amount of resources we – students, workers, and citizens of a digital world – all have at our disposal. Now that 2011 is at a close, I find myself with an opportunity to reflect back on what drew me toward the CUNY SPS community……..

For the majority of Americans, acceptance into a university is considered a milestone – a portal of sorts that allows graduates entrance into a successful career and fulfilling life. University life is viewed with awe as hopeful high school graduates contemplate the schools they will attend, the courses they will study, the clubs they will involve themselves in, the people they will meet, and the knowledge they will exit with. The prospects of university life are often made better when it is considered that as college freshmen they may live on-campus and thus practice ‘real-life skills’ – such as meeting deadlines, budgeting, and time management – away from home. When the four (or more) years have been completed, the new graduate proudly displays their degree and promptly walks into a job which highlights the skills honed at the university. Although, current economic times render these oft-held expectations of university life improbable, many hopeful college entrants entertain such dreams. Up until July 8th 2011, I was one of these many college hopefuls, albeit, one with a slightly different story.

I am a tennis athlete who has always preferred homeschooling. Like many of my same-age peers with whom I grew up, I imagined myself playing for whichever university offered me a scholarship. I saw myself on the pristine courts of universities known for their tennis accomplishments such as UCLA or USC. Throughout my early years as a tennis player, prospects seemed good. I consistently played tournaments, amassed several tournament wins, and generally finished in the top ten of my respective age division. Things seemed to be on the right track until I was injured. Before I knew it, tennis had taken a backseat and my scholarship plans were halted. It was clear I would need to find an alternate method of attending a university.

Since my dreams of a college scholarship would not be fulfilled as I had hoped, I began taking community college courses. In the beginning, I had merely hoped to augment my high school education. However, as I took more and more community college classes, I began to consider the idea of transferring my units to a university and begin pursing a baccalaureate degree in earnest. I had gathered approximately seventy units and was anxiously researching universities to determine where I could go. I did not want to leave home so the program would have to be online; yet, I also wanted a rigorous instruction that would build upon the knowledge I had gained and challenge my ideas. By chance, I discovered City University of New York School of Professional Studies. Further investigation revealed that SPS offered online baccalaureate degrees and would accept up to ninety units. It seemed as if I had found the right program.

I contacted CUNY SPS and began the enrollment process. I tracked down transcripts, composed a personal statement, completed applications, and impatiently awaited a letter of acceptance. I received it July 8th and shortly thereafter began to correspond with my Academic Advisor. She proved very helpful as I secured my classes, responding to my questions and concerns in a timely and informed manner. I soon became acclimated to my classes and enjoyed a highly successful first semester as an SPS student. As the Spring Semester approaches, I am looking forward not only to my upcoming classes but also to engaging with the wider CUNY community through our Community Blog.