John Gibson

I was employed at International Paper in Franklin, VA for 25 years. When the paper mill closed in 2010, I was faced with many decisions about my future. It did not take very long for me to realize that my best option was to return to school. I enrolled at Roanoke-Chowan Community College’s Computer Information Technology program for the fall semester and began what would be one of the most interesting and challenging experiences of my life.

Returning to school after 36 years was daunting, but I discovered that my enthusiasm for learning was at a much higher level than it had ever been in my younger days. I also discovered that many of my life experiences would prove invaluable to me in the areas of managing my time, setting priorities, and having the discipline to complete my assignments accurately and in a timely fashion.

It was not quite as easy as it sounds, however. At 57 years of age, I have to say that the physical education class was quite a challenge, but no more than any of the programming or system analysis classes. I am proud of my accomplishments at R-CCC. I am confident that I am able to face what is still an uncertain future armed with the tools I need for success.