Associate in Arts

Zak Switzer grew up in Yakima and attended West Valley schools. He first enrolled in YVCC’s Running Start program but the demands of high school, sports, and college courses was challenging. Switzer ended up dropping his Running Start classes and completed his senior year at the high school. “I didn’t think college was for me,” stated Switzer. “So I started working for a construction company installing heating and air conditioning systems. I got married and started a family,” he continued. Switzer’s work was very labor intensive and so he revisited the idea of going back to school. His wife had graduated from YVCC’s Surgical Technology Program and encouraged him to go back to school. Since he had a number of credits toward his associate degree already, he decided to take a chance. Zak has excelled in his coursework and has retaken classes that he previously struggled in, now earning all A’s. “YVCC is a fun place to be. You meet new people, you build a sense of community,” stated Switzer. “I’ve been in the real world and I thought coming back to school would be really hard. But I brought a lot of intensity to my studies, I’ve worked hard, and I’ve found good support from other students who want to do well too,” he continued. Switzer will graduate this summer with his associate in arts degree. His plans to transfer to Central Washington University and pursue a degree in electrical engineering.

Zak Switzer

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