Student Spotlight: Colton Eakins
College of DuPage just made sense to Colton Eakins.
“I cannot pick one aspect that made me decide to choose College of DuPage,” he said. “I am sure most people would respond that the low tuition was their tipping point. While this may also be true in my case, I think it is more pertinent to note what made me stay at the College of DuPage: the faculty. No student is perfect in his or her studies. My professors and my counselors provided much-needed support. Higher education is full of choices, and College of DuPage was the best option for me.”
Eakins admits, though, that higher education would not have been an option without being named a Presidential Scholar, which includes a full tuition scholarship and enrollment in COD’s Honors program and the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society.
“I do not do College of DuPage justice when I say being a Presidential Scholar is an honor,” he said. “I will always be thankful for the College’s investment in me as an individual. I want to leave a lasting impact on the College in the same way it has and continues to impact me.”
Eakins earned his Associate in Engineering Science, becoming the first person in his family to earn a college degree. He is only one class shy of earning a second degree, the Associate in Science. While at COD, he was a peer tutor of advanced mathematics in the Learning Commons. In 2015, he landed a biophysics internship at the Illinois Institute of Technology. He is performing computer simulations on a collection of protein and DNA molecules and is looking forward to the benefits of the internship.
“There’s nothing that can match actually experiencing the work,” he said. “This opportunity will provide a real view of what it’s like to work in research. Also, networking with experienced graduate students and speaking with experts in the field is really a privilege.”
Eakins plans to study bioengineering at IIT. Eventually he would like to get a master’s degree and a doctorate in the biomedical engineering field.
“Education is not short term for me. My major will carry me throughout College of DuPage and beyond, and I could not be happier,” he said. “I came to College of DuPage to learn – not necessarily to put a high GPA on my transfer application. I did not care if I failed every class. I did not care if I aced every class. I wanted to improve in my own right. This, in a sense, will be my ongoing personal goal: improvement. By simply being at College of DuPage, all of my goals became more achievable. Having graduated, I am now the happiest I have ever been because I am much more rational about my goals and I feel like I understand myself more as a person.”
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2016 College of DuPage