Story Cont.

Annette Crossno, Del Mar College

Annette Crossno is one determined grandmother. At the age of 45 she enrolled in school with what she describes as a strong desire “to make a difference for me and be a good example for my family.”

During weekday mornings she took classes for her general education development (GED) high school equivalency certificate, and in the afternoon she took classes in Del Mar College’s IT-GIS Essentials Program. The continuing education program uses a fast-track format to teach cybersecurity, geospatial technology, programming and networking, and data communications.

“She’s a non-traditional student who had a grueling schedule, and her transportation was her bicycle,” said Christina Alvarado, NISGTC career coach. “It took tenacity, perseverance, and a commitment to reach her goal to finish the program on a very high note,” she said.

When Crossno’s bicycle was stolen on the day she had an Intro to Database test, Crossno did not miss class—she got a ride to school with a classmate. Afterward her classmates put their money together to buy her a replacement bike for $50.

“I cried! It was the first time I had experienced that much generosity. It touched my heart and inspired me,” Crossno wrote in a testimonial about the IT-GIS Essentials Program.

By completing the five accelerated courses that count toward the IT-GIS Essentials certificate, she earned 32 continuing education units. She plans to pursue her career goal of becoming a GIS technician.