Among the many truisms often cited, one in particular applies to Tracy Nist and her daughter Lyric Boothe: there are multiple “right” ways to reach the end goal. Tracy graduated from high school, joined the Army, balanced her single mom role with the challenges of adulthood and eventually earned her associate degree at age 41. Lyric graduated from Southside High School in the top 10% of her class, accepted the Presidential Scholar Award that her top 10% status entitled her to, and earned an associate degree at age 20 … at the same ceremony as her mother.
Tracy and Lyric are both graduates of Corning Community College’s (CCC) Class of 2015. They chose CCC for very different reasons. Although Lyric was ready to enroll at Temple University, she picked CCC because she couldn’t pass up the opportunity to complete two years of a bachelor’s degree tuition-free.
“I devoted the first two years of college to exploring my professional options and working with people whose perspectives have been shaped by very different experiences,” said Lyric. “I am well prepared to work with any professor or co-worker I’ll ever have.”
Before Tracy said yes to re-enrolling at CCC (she took CCC classes in high school), she did some soul-searching. For 20 years, her life revolved around her children. She had and still has a well-paying, satisfying career with the post office. What would a degree add?
“Not only did I enjoy every minute of my time at CCC, but I see new possibilities for my future now,” said Tracy, who completed her degree part-time taking a mix of online and evening on-site courses. “Earning this degree is one of the most rewarding accomplishments I’ve had.”
The future is, indeed, bright for both Tracy and Lyric. This fall, Lyric enrolled at Temple University far ahead of her peers, starting her junior year with no student debt and a deep understanding of her professional goals. Tracy graduated with honors, with a newfound passion for writing and history, and with renewed vigor for her future.