The time in India offered me the chance to go back to school via the University of Phoenix and their on-line program. I started in June of 2008 and finished in February if 2010. Then over the weekend of June 25Th Tracy and I travelled to Phoenix to attended the Graduation Ceremony.
The whole thing was crazy - from being delayed in Minneapolis, arriving to the Arizona Biltmore right in the middle of the 2010 Kappa Kappa Gamma national convention, to standing in line with 1400 other graduates. I was surprised to see that many people and looking around realized that everyone in the room had one thing in common, achieving the dream of a college education. There were Grandparents, people from the armed forces, mothers, fathers and other stay at home parents like me. There were several groups of father son, mother daughter and brother sister graduates. The experience was incredible. Tracy spent most of the time fighting off tears. It was so moving and unbelievable how hard ALL these folks worked to achieve this milestone. Many of them were the 1st people in their families to graduate and the energy of their families in celebrating this success was touching. Honestly, it was a once in a lifetime experience. If you EVER get a chance to go to a U of Phoenix graduation, do it! It'll totally change your view of what a major milestone graduation is for much of the population.
Condelezza Rice was the commencement speaker and GW Bush's brother came and spoke about the Point of Light foundation (they have a new agreement with UofP that's trying to connect online students with learning volunteer activities - pretty cool).
I am thankful to Tracy, Jimmy, Kay and Billy for the support and understanding during the many times I was stressed out trying to meet one deadline or another.Without their love and support I am not sure I would have made it. The support and encouragement from all our family and friends is also greatly appreciated.
My name is Tom Murphy and I am a Phoenix!