Student Spotlight: Henry Gordon
When Henry Gordon learned he received the Naperville Rotary Charities scholarship, he knew attending college was now possible.
“The day I got the phone call saying that I was awarded the scholarship, I jumped around the house like a little kid on Christmas,” he said. “I was so grateful for this wonderful opportunity and hoped to make the best of it.”
Gordon used the $6,000 to start classes at College of DuPage, where he later was president of the Student Leadership Council and worked as a peer tutor in the Learning Commons.
He graduated with honors, earning his Associate in Science, and transferred to Northern Illinois University, where he completed his bachelor’s degree in mathematics. Although he once thought about pursuing a master’s and Ph.D., potentially looking at a research professorship as a career, he has decided to look at other options.
Gordon worked as a professional tutor in the Learning Commons at COD and part-time as a researcher for a consulting firm that specializes in quantitative analysis.
“It was an exciting opportunity, as is working at the school that was my second home for three years,” he said. “I liked giving back to the students.”
Currently he is in Texas in a special teaching program offered by the Pasadena Independent School District for people with a bachelor’s degree but no education background. After three months of classes, participants can teach for one year on a probationary teaching certificate while taking classes at night. At the end of their first year, participants can take the teaching certification test.
In the fall, Gordan is looking forward to teaching a new college prep math class and algebra courses at Dr. Kirk Lewis Career and Technical High school.
“It’s an exciting time,” he said. “The school is an almost brand new campus in the district. Students attending choose a career pathway along with their core classes to earn a certificate alongside their diploma. These range from Cosmetology, Heating and Air, Automotive, Criminal Justice, and many more.”
Gordon praises College of DuPage and wants people to know of its excellence.
“At my high school, COD was usually referred to as the ‘College of Dreams’ with a sarcastic undertone,” he said. “It is the place where people wind up when they can’t go to a ‘real’ college. That just is not true.
“I was talking with a friend of mine who attended UIC, and he was surprised at the topics that we covered in my Calculus II class at COD that he never learned until later classes. The education provided at COD is first-rate and even better in some areas when compared to big universities. I received a quality yet affordable education at College of DuPage.”
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