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Rieger writes winning essay

Feb 18, 2022

Rockingham Community College students are challenged each year to write an essay about why RCC was their best choice, for a chance to win a monetary prize from the RCC Foundation.

Kylee Rieger, an English Language/Literature student from Greensboro won the $500 first-place prize with her essay about how RCC exceeded her expectations in a short period of time.

Rieger said that when she enrolled in RCC, she could not have imagined the impact the college would have on her in just her first semester.

“I chose RCC because it had a beautiful campus and had classes that I knew I would be interested in taking,” she said, adding that in the first 10 weeks, she “ formed amazing relationships not only with fellow students, but with faculty as well. In my short time at RCC, it has provided me with incredible education … and also offered me an outlet to create and do things that are important to me.”

She said RCC provides tools to succeed both academically and personally.

“One of the most vital resources being the faculty, all of the teachers that I have had in my first semester made it clear that their number one goal is making sure their students succeed. Whether it be in class or in their office hours, every time I have asked one of my teachers a question they have always gone above and beyond to make sure that I understand the topic they are teaching,” she said.

Rieger praised the library for its books, resources, and quiet atmosphere.

“The librarians are incredibly helpful and are always available to help students find a specific book, cite a resource in MLA or APA format, or order an important book that a student might need. These are just a few of the incredible resources that I have been given access to as a student at RCC.”

Rieger has become involved in campus activities.

“I have recently joined the Student Government Association and have met some of the most supportive, passionate people. I am starting a book club, which has provided me a creative outlet and the opportunity to create lasting relationships,” she said.

“I am so grateful for the unending support that I am receiving from the director of Student Life, librarians, and the English department. These people have helped me learn, grow, and achieve things that I once thought were impossible,” Rieger said. “Being given the opportunity to join and start clubs has led me to flourishing creatively and it has also taught me important leadership and group skills that I hope to keep with me for the rest of my life.”

At first glance, “I thought it would just be a pretty campus with great academic courses,” Rieger said. “However, I have found that it is really the people who make the school extraordinary. It is the faculty with their unwavering support and knowledge as well as my incredibly ambitious peers who have shown me that I have made the right choice.”

Jasmine Johnson of Reidsville placed second in the essay contest. A December graduate in the Early Childhood Education program, Jasmine touted “amazing teachers who saw and understood my full potential and encouraged me to develop as an individual.”

Johnson said that she never believed in herself or that she could accomplish anything.

“I was hearing wonderful things about RCC and knew it was close by, so I decided to convince myself that ‘I can do this,’” she said. “I can’t express how much RCC has transformed my life and how much becoming a student has changed me for the better. I’ve learned a lot at RCC, and it’s helped me improve my verbal, writing, and interpersonal skills.”

Johnson’s confidence in completing assignments has increased abundantly at RCC, as has her work ethic.

“RCC presented me with the most extraordinary student experience. I feel like I have found a family at RCC who actually loves and cares for me,” she said.

Brittany Griffin of Eden took third place in the essay contest.  

Losing her mother to cancer just weeks after Griffin’s high school graduation, her mindset was not on RCC’s Nursing program in which she enrolled that fall. She took off a semester and tried again, to no avail.

But five years later, with a husband and two small children, she began striving to be a role model for them. Already working full-time as an accounting assistant, she enrolled in RCC’s Accounting and Finance program.

Griffin said taking online courses through RCC has been a wonderful experience, and the flexibility is beneficial because of her work schedule.

“I can go at my own pace completing my work for the most part. My advisor as well as all of my instructors have been amazing at answering any and all of my questions,” she said. “RCC is by far the best choice and chance that I have of completing my degree and showing my children that no matter what hand of cards life gives you, that it is never too late to get an education,” Griffin said. “It may take me several years compared to fresh-out-of-high-school students, but that’s the beauty about RCC. It doesn’t matter how long it takes to complete your course of study, the RCC faculty will walk side by side with you every step of the way.”


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Wentworth, NC 27375


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