Friday, March 14, 2014

Dream realized, then reconsidered

Despite more than 20 surgeries and 14 years of chronic back pain, A.J. Korba realized her dream of being a writer. She wrote a novel, and had it published.

Then she reread it. It wasn’t good.

“All those years of being focused on my condition—either planning surgery or having surgery or recovering surgery—something had to give,” she said. “Apparently what gave were some basic rules of writing.”

She decided she needed a refresher. The Mason County, Wash., resident enrolled at Olympic College, then transferred to WSU Global Campus. She’s majoring in humanities, with concentrations in English and sociology, and will graduate in May. “I think I’ve taken almost every upper level English course at the Global Campus,” she said.

She chose WSU Global Campus because of its reputation, she said. Now that she’s enrolled, she doesn’t want to leave. “It fits well with my life,” she said.

More...Korba shares her appreciation of college by bringing her two adult nephews to Global Campus gatherings, such as the recent Tacoma Rendezvous. “I don’t want them to discount school,” she said, because of bad information from friends, TV ads and news stories. “I want their choices to be informed choices.”

Korba’s disability resulted from two injuries in her 20s. She can’t sit for long periods—“I do my homework in a recliner”—yet she’s racked up an remarkable list of accomplishments. She was both a Phi Theta Kappa member and a President’s Scholar at Olympic College. She has a 3.95 GPA at the Global Campus, is on the WSU President’s Honor Roll, and has won scholarships from the Seattle Foundation and ASWSU Global, the online student government.

“What I lack in physical ability,” she said, “I make up for in determination, resourcefulness and perseverance.”

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