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Mid-State student and WTCS Ambassador turns last-ditch college effort into inspiring second chapter
Mid-State Technical College’s commencement on Sunday, May 19, will mark the culmination of one incredible transformation by student Vikram Gill of Stevens Point. After two unsuccessful attempts as a university student, Gill turned his quick reset at Mid-State into a deep investment in life as a technical college student, ultimately earning the opportunity to represent the College at the state level as a WTCS Ambassador.
Forced to take two years off from UW-Stevens Point before he could reapply, Gill’s second chance at Mid-State began in the summer of 2017. “I wanted to come to school, do my classwork and then leave,” said Gill. Becoming involved in student life wasn’t really the plan.” Already involved in a 12-step fellowship for people struggling with addiction, Gill had plenty on his plate with his roles on various boards and committees and even the friendships he had already made there.
Excited for the Business Management program, Gill came in expecting to struggle in business classes and really enjoy online classes. He was proven wrong on both counts, excelling in his economics class—he credits the instructor for making it fun to learn—and realizing that while online classes are a great choice for some, he needed face-to-face communication. “I’m an audio learner,” said Gill. “Discussions really help me retain information the best.”
It would not be the last major personal insight for Gill, who would soon find himself exploring and taking advantage of all Mid-State had to offer, even if he wasn’t expecting most of it.
Gill came to appreciate and embrace a wide variety of what he describes as “opportunities for personal and professional growth” at Mid-State. As a campus representative and student ambassador, he was able to network and get to know a variety of people throughout the College. Through those connections, he secured an internship with Mid-State’s Human Resources department, where he made some good friends. “Not only did I make connections,” he said, “I also gained some personal clarity and came to the realization that I want to pursue a career in higher education.”
Adding to his Mid-State roles, Gill was later selected to serve as Mid-State’s 2018–19 WTCS Ambassador, a rare honor awarded to one student from each Wisconsin technical college each year. In this new and important role, Gill was suddenly moving in influential circles while representing the College at a state-wide conference with other ambassadors. This, said Gill, was his favorite memory from his time at Mid-State. “I got to meet 15 other exceptional students from around the state and participate in leadership and networking sessions. I’m grateful for the opportunity to maintain those relationships and to share my story with people within the Wisconsin Technical College System.”
Gill is now looking forward to Mid-State’s graduation ceremony, where friends and family can see the payoff for all of his hard work. And he has some advice for any student struggling to adapt to college life: “Reach out for help when you're struggling, be grateful for what you have and the opportunities that you're given. Don't take for granted the opportunities to grow and to mature.”
For Gill’s full story and on-camera interview, visit mstc.edu/gradspotlight.