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“Last Resort” Turns into Best Option for Christian Hargas
December 08, 2016
What was perceived as “the last resort” by Christian Hargas turned into the first step of what he considers a life-changing college experience.
As a senior at Mehlville High School, Hargas had his heart set on attending the University of Southern California for two reasons.
First, he is a huge USC Trojans football fan, and second, he wanted to study media in one of the largest markets in the world – Los Angeles.
And for two reasons, Hargas’ parents were not in favor of his plans.
“My parents were against me attending USC because they were afraid of me flying halfway across the country on my own,” he noted. “My other option was Stanford University, but that was quickly shot down because of how expensive it was and my parents were against me going there, too. Since USC was the only option I was ready to pursue, but never had the chance to, I did not know where else I wanted to go for college.”
With fall quickly approaching, Hargas chose to attend St. Louis Community College.
“It turned out to be the best decision of my life because I had such a great experience at STLCC,” Hargas said. “It was also very close and much more affordable as opposed to USC, which is what my parents loved the most.”
Hargas followed his passion and studied media communications at STLCC’s Meramec campus.
“I did not want to focus squarely on journalism or film because I wanted to amass as much information as possible so I could decide which career path would be best for me,” Hargas said. “Needless to say, it was the best decision I ever made because it allowed me to understand different realms of media as well as receive hands-on training through several instructional courses along with extracurricular activities pertaining to the subject. I have always been interested in the art of media, in its various different forms, so I wanted to explore it in more detail."
Hargas also made a conscious effort to get to know his instructors and other staff members as people, not just college officials. Each relationship, Hargas noted, has provided a piece of advice or information that he has used to further grow and mature.
“One thing about me is that I can take something away from anything I am involved with, even if it does not directly pertain to a personal interest of mine,” Hargas said. “I feel like the officials I worked with at the college saw that and really appreciated it, but I appreciate their efforts more than they could ever imagine.
“STLCC is full of wonderful professors, faculty and staff members who not only hold their student's interest to heart, they also take the time to understand their students as people,” Hargas added. “I realize their passion for teaching as they realize my passion for learning. I want them to understand my appreciation and gratitude for them because they use their time to help others.”
Hargas, now 21, earned his associate degree this past summer. He currently attends Webster University and is studying media communications. He again is keeping his options open in terms of a career path.
“I am still very interested in learning about other forms of media, such as film, radio, photography, advertising, etc., but broadcast and print journalism has become the slight focus at the moment,” he said. “The classes offered at Webster are so unique and dynamic; they push you to dig deeper for information and not believe everything at its surface. Much like a professional journalist, I can confidently say I am learning the ropes of true journalism not just by the material taught by the professors, but the approach to learning and collecting information in order to do well in each class."