Lorain County Community College students have a special way to let the world know they are celebrating an academic achievement. They can visit Enrollment Services in the Bass Library to ring a bell to announce they’ve completed a milestone, like landing an internship or filing for graduation. Counselors normally celebrate with the bell-ringer and call out the student’s achievement for everyone to hear. One of the most recent hard-working students to ring the bell is soon-to-be graduate Quint Thomas.
Thomas is a father of three, full-time employee and will graduate at the end of spring semester with an associate degree in applied electronics. He says a big part of his success in his college journey was due to the support of his counselor, Klare Heston.
Heston and Thomas both started at LCCC in 2008, Heston with her job, and Thomas with his studies. “When I came here, I didn’t know what direction to take,” he said.
Today, Thomas thanks Heston for her support with advising and scheduling, which was especially helpful for him while balancing his busy life as an employee, student and father.
That level of personal attention is a priority at LCCC, Associate Provost of Enrollment Management and Student Success Stephanie Sutton said. Every student at LCCC is assigned to an advisor or counselor who helps them each step of the way – and that includes celebrating successes, she added.
Thomas’ family is also a big part of his journey. “I started college to inspire my kids to do better in life and to be a better role model,” the 40-year-old Oberlin resident said.
His oldest son, Kudor, said his father motivated him to do more. “I thought school wasn’t for me until I saw him doing it,” he said. As a recent Oberlin High School graduate, he plans to continue his educational journey, possibly in the LCCC culinary program.
His seventh-grade son, Tavion, said his dad is an inspiration, and he hopes to one day become an athlete, or a dean or superintendent. Thomas’ youngest, his daughter, Na’tavia, is also proud, she said.
Before coming to LCCC, Thomas had been working in the printing industry, but knew that with the rise of the internet, the longevity and strength of printing industry was questionable. Throughout his life he had always liked electronics, he said, even as a high school student who took classes at the JVS, so seeking a degree in applied electronics seemed like a natural fit.
After Thomas graduates in May, he plans to possibly complete his bachelor’s degree through LCCC’s University Partnership with Cleveland State University.
WATCH: Quint Thomas ring the bell to celebrate his academic success.