Education and what it can do for you…my story


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On this day 10 years ago, I received this recruiting letter from Columbia University. It was just one of several such letters I received from Ivy League colleges, after becoming the recipient of the 2006 All-USA Academic Team community college award.

Even more came when I became the New Century Scholar for Wyoming for having the highest scoring application for the state.

Obviously I chose not to go to any of these universities after finishing my 3 associate degrees at Central Wyoming College (and why I am still a constitutional conservative).

While it would have been one hell of a feather in my cap, there was no way I could move my family out to NY, NY, and attend full time…not to mention the mind boggling tuition and assorted fees for just going there.

After all, both Annie and I and all three of our college age kids were sharing a 2 room dorm, having walked in the door with absolutely no savings.

One of the hardest times of my life, letting go of so much and trusting God (and Annie) that it would all work out…must less getting invites from the most well known colleges in the world.

I am still humbled to have received so much recognition for just doing what I knew to be right for my family and I.

I am nothing special, just a hard working, blue AND white collar guy, who did 20 credit hour semesters, worked three part time jobs, and got involved in all levels of college activities including radio, tv, student government (I was even student senate president for a while), and represented the entire student body in several committees on campus.

Just took a little time, lots of caring, very little sleep, and knowing that the entire campus was “watching the old guy” do all the things I did to completion.

My work ethic was earned two decades before when Annie and I were raising three babies, and I kept a roof over our head and food in the fridge without those degrees.

Bottom line…never give up and always keep learning new things every single day. Someday, you will get the recognition you deserve…maybe not from Harvard, Columbia, or Princeton…but still enough to know you’re on the right path.

Updated: May 20, 2016 — 12:36 am

The Author

Rich Fleetwood

Rich is the founder of SurvivalRing, now in it's 24th year, author of multimedia CDs and DVDs, loves the outdoors, his family, his geeky skill-set, and lives in rural southern Wyoming, just below the continental divide (long story, that...). Always ready to help others, he shares what he learns on multiple blogs, many social sites, and more. With a background in preparedness and survival skills, training with county, state, and national organizations, and skills in all areas of media and on air experience in live radio and television, Rich is always thinking about the "big picture", when it comes to helping individuals and families prepare for life's little surprises.

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