Brittany Shearer found her niche at Northern Virginia Community College’s Manassas Campus, where she served in leadership positions for a variety of clubs and activities. She was Phi Theta Kappa secretary, Campus Council student representative and nominated for Who’s Who Among Students in American Junior Colleges.
She also traveled to Richmond with a group of students to meet Virginia senators and delegates on Community College Day. After her photo from that visit appeared in a local newspaper, Shearer received an offer to intern with Representative Gerry Connolly’s office and she credits NOVA for making this valuable learning opportunity available.
“That experience perfectly sums up how NOVA helped me reach my goals,” said Shearer, who earned two associate degrees, in liberal arts and social sciences.
Not bad for someone who started at a large four-year institution before deciding she wasn’t ready for that level of independence. The community college's smaller, more personalized environment gave Shearer the chance to shine and gain confidence in her abilities.
“Even though more students enroll in NOVA than any Virginia university, class sizes are still manageable and my professors were never too busy for me. Many of my instructors and administrators are amazing people and I’m sure they will continue to play significant roles in my academic career.”
She also appreciates lessons learned from her peers. “I met people from all different backgrounds and the stories from other students were a huge motivator for me. Some were there because they couldn’t afford a four-year school or they had to stay home to take care of their parents, and it made me really grateful for my own opportunities."
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