Alumni Spotlight

Our alumni have some pretty amazing stories to tell. Harper alumni have overcome significant obstacles, worked hard on their journey toward success and are making great contributions in both career and community. If you have an idea for an Alumni Spotlight story, contact alumni@harpercollege.edu.

Read their stories

Illini Solar Car

Harper College alum Tim Damisch is president of the Illini Solar Car Team, which will compete this summer in the American Solar Challenge. Read More

Alumni from left: Ahmed Akinyele, Suliat Akinyele and Veronica Naranjo.

When Veronica Naranjo moved to the Chicago area from Colombia in 2006, she had a college degree but she didn’t speak much English and wasn’t certain about her first steps in her new country. After exploring area colleges, she enrolled in the ESL program at Harper College. Once at Harper, she quickly found that the program provided so much more than the language skills she wanted to improve. Read More

Nurse Hanan Aquil wearing personal protective equipment

As you’d imagine, a shift working with coronavirus patients is completely different than a traditional workday, alumni of Harper College’s nursing program say. “It’s really night and day in terms of how we’re caring for patients,” said Hanan Aquil, a 2016 graduate working at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington. Read More

Reveca Torres

Harper alumna Reveca Torres and Chicago artists Miriam Pare and Tara Ahern have created the exhibit, “Tres Fridas Project: Reimagining Art Through the Disability Lens.” Read More

Anne Harrigan

For attorney Anne Harrigan, A.A.S. ’96 and A.A. ’97, Harper served as the launching pad to a successful career in public service law. Read More

hector martinez

For Harper College alum Dr. Hector Martinez, his educational trajectory was driven in part by the dreams of his parents – first-generation immigrants from Mexico who wanted more for their children. Read More

aj_collier

A.J. Collier, AA ’91 and AS ’92, feels lucky because fun and games are not only a daily occurrence but a mandatory part of the job. Read More

Front-facing photo of Harper College fashion program alumna Kim Scanlan

For Harper College fashion program alumna Kim Scanlan, the road to fashion designer began when her Girl Scout troop visited Harper’s fashion department. Read More

Harper Cross Country Team

After running cross country as a student at Harper College in 1969, Coach Jim Macnider never imagined he’d return to coach the very team and sport he credits with giving him the determination to stay in college and finish his education. Read More

jori_donna

Celebrating Harper's donors and the students' dreams they help realize. Read More

kristina_gaardbo

Kristina Gaardbo, co-owner of Chicago Culinary Kitchen, credits her time as a student at Harper and the years in the nursing field with giving her the foundational skills to be a successful business owner and helping launch into this chapter of her adventure. Read More

Harper alum Bilal Hussain

Ten years ago, in 2006, I started my first day as a student here at Harper. I was a first-generation college student, but I never thought too much of it until after I graduated from Harper. My parents are Pakistani Muslim immigrants who did not attend college in the United States and could not offer any guidance on how to navigate college or how to choose a career path. Read More

Michael Turgeon

Michael Turgeon is an engineer, entrepreneur, financial planner and proud Harper graduate. Although Michael’s high school friends jokingly referred to Harper as the “University of Southern Palatine,” Michael is very proud of his choice to attend Harper. Read More

Ryan Eberhardt

A 2016 graduate, Harper alum Ryan Eberhardt just made his way to Palo Alto, California to begin his junior year at Stanford University, where he plans to major in computer science and then pursue a master’s degree. Read More

Donna Grzegorek and her husband Michael.

Donna Grzegorek earned her degree in dental hygiene from Harper College in 1980. Though she had initially planned to attend a 4-year university, Donna decided to attend Harper after learning that Harper graduates achieved higher scores on the national board exams than graduates of other programs. Read More

Last Updated: 8/19/21