For Joel Antonie, the idea of attending college was definitely something he wanted to pursue, but wasn’t sure how to make it work following high school as he began travelling with his family between the Netherlands and the United States. Thanks to Dr. Sandol Johnson, an instructor at Clevland Community College, Antonie learned more about CCC’s online classes and knew instantly this was the way he could attain his education and still continue his travels. “Online classes were perfect in my case and because of my unpredictable schedule, this type of education was ideal for me,” Antonie says.
Antonie was already well on his way toward an Associate’s degree since he had also taken advantage of college classes while he was still in high school. Unclear of what he wanted to major in he says the two years of online classes allowed him to get a more clear idea of the kind of work he wanted to focus on, “At CCC, I took a cultural anthropology class which eventually led me to a degree in International Relations from Webster University in Leiden, Netherlands. Those two years travelling and taking online classes, really allowed me to determine full-well what I wanted to spend my life doing.”
“I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help and flexibility of the online classes at CCC and the encouragement of Dr. Johnson. She was instrumental in keeping me aware of registration dates and what classes I needed to complete my degree,” he adds.
Today, Antonie is serving as an intern with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and spends much of his time at the regional support hub in Nairobi, Kenya, where he conducts refugee status determination research. “I will be happy to tell anyone who believes that a community college education is worth less than that of a four-year college or university. That it is simply not true…I am proof !”