Adult Student Takes Courageous Steps to Earn Degree; Looks to Launching New Career

Krecia Price and Bev Albright

Krecia Price and Bev Albright share a light moment in the Assistive Technology Lab at MCC.

Krecia Price of Crystal Lake, is taking the first courageous steps toward launching a new career as an occupational therapist. She recently returned to MCC to fulfill her dream of helping people like her live a more confident, independent life. As a result of retinal detachment in both eyes, she is completely blind in one eye and recently became legally blind in the other.

She first started at MCC in 1996 with normal vision, but left school due to work and family obligations. Her vision became impaired while she worked as a customer service representative.

Price, 38, decided to return to college in spring 2012 to complete her associate’s degree and has since earned a 4.0 GPA and won the Howard Foreman Special Needs Memorial Scholarship from MCC. She also was awarded a scholarship from Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois and a scholarship from The Chicago Lighthouse for People who are Blind or Visually Impaired.

She plans to graduate from MCC in December 2013 with an Associate in Science degree and then transfer to Columbia College of Missouri at the Crystal Lake campus, where she will pursue her bachelor’s degree in human services with a minor in psychology. From there, she plans to transfer to Rush University to earn a master’s degree in occupational therapy, with a specialty in working with the blind and visually impaired.

“My experience at MCC has given me the confidence to keep going with my education. When I started, I was terrified; I had no idea how things would go for me, but it’s been great.”

She credits the MCC Special Needs Department for giving her, in her words, a “safe zone” where she felt “good vibes” from everyone in the office. They provided her with alternative textbooks on CD.

“Honestly, if it wasn’t for the Special Needs Department, I don’t think I would be where I am at school today,” she said.

In addition to the special needs assistance, her instructors and fellow classmates have helped her overcome obstacles.

“I’ve been fortunate to have excellent instructors at MCC who truly take the time to help me do the best that I can. For example, math instructor Laura Middaugh, took the “fear of math right out of me” and biology instructor John Peters encouraged her and helped her see, under a microscope, the same things as everyone else saw.

“I could go on and on and give you great stories about each instructor that I’ve had—they’ve all been fantastic. They’ve all offered to enlarge my tests, meet with me to go over anything I felt I may have missed in class, slow down when I’ve asked…it’s endless.”

“I’ve made some wonderful friends and I’ve had some terrific classmates who were very helpful whenever I needed anything,” she said.

When she’s not attending classes, she works out in the MCC Fitness Center and enjoys bowling and golfing in her spare time.

“I know now that I am more than capable of achieving my goals, whether they are in education or personal. Coming back to MCC gave me what I needed to believe in myself again.”

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