Nov. 7-13 is recognized as National Nontraditional Students Week, which gives us an opportunity to reflect on how the college experience has changed over the years, and how college can bring value to a wide array of students who may not have considered it a viable option for them.

I recently attended my 25-year high school reunion in Winchester, Indiana – a town with fewer than five thousand residents. Aside from sharing the expected sentiments of, “Wow, we’re old. How did this happen?”, being with my classmates resurfaced old feelings of self-doubt.

Matt Hawkins is executive vice president & chief of staff at Ivy Tech Community College. He can be reached at

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