Catherine Briggs: ECC gave me a solid foundation

  • Tags: Achievements | Commencement | Student Profile
Published 05/16/2020
Catherine Briggs, class of 2020

Catherine Briggs, class of 2020

It feels like just yesterday that I arrived for my new student orientation. As an international student from South Africa, I was overwhelmed and so excited at being in a new country, ready to realize one of my lifelong dreams of receiving a world-class education. Elgin Community College has been my home away from home, and I can’t think of any other place I would have rather started my education.

Lauren Nehlsen and Natalie Escobar in the International Education and Programs department have had the biggest impact and influence on me at ECC. As both an international student and one of their student workers, they made me feel like I was home, welcome, and always had the support I needed.

ECC provided me with a solid foundation in my educational journey as well as workplace experience. As much as I am sad to be leaving, I have learned to embrace the next steps in my journey with excitement and open arms. The most important lesson I learned was that as many times that I felt alone and overwhelmed, I was never alone, and I always found the support I needed from professors and peers.

I cannot find words great enough to describe the gratitude I feel for having the opportunity to attend ECC. I am ready for my future and excited to be transferring to Roosevelt University in the fall with a scholarship. 


Catherine Briggs ‘20
Associate in Arts
South Africa