Student Speaker Alice Legg Seizes the Moment
Legg to share her never-give-up story at commencement
Twenty years ago, Alice Legg was a freshman at Baldwin Wallace University. She had plans to double-major in psychology and art, with the goal of becoming an art therapist.
But, as she puts it, “life happened.”
“I had to pay for a part of my schooling myself, and it just didn’t work out,” Legg said.
Financial problems forced her to drop out of BW after just one year. She eventually married and focused on raising her three children. But those smoldering embers never went out. She always wanted to return to college, earn a degree and pursue a career.
In 2016, with her children as teenagers, the time was finally right. At the age of 39, the Fairview Park resident enrolled at Cuyahoga Community College. Tonight, she addresses nearly 3,000 of her fellow graduates as the student speaker at the Tri-C 2018 Spring Commencement.
“It’s one of the greatest honors that has ever been bestowed upon me,” said Legg, now 41. “It’s an opportunity to speak to my peers, share my story and relay a very important message: you can achieve your dreams.”
In her two years at Tri-C, Legg rediscovered her passion for learning. She was accepted into the Mandel Scholars Academy, Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society, the Honors Program and was named to the All-Ohio Academic First Team.
Legg will attend Cleveland State University, where she has been accepted into the Mandel Honors Program. She plans to earn a bachelor’s degree in urban studies before attending CSU’s Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.
“My goal is now to become a prosecutor, and maybe a judge,” she said. “I’ve always been someone who is analytical and believes in justice and fairness, so
Legg hopes her speech this evening resonates, in particular, with single mothers like herself.
“At the time I became a single parent, it wasn’t the norm,” she said. “I went through being scrutinized and stigmatized. But I wasn’t going to allow myself to give in to that. I was going to make sure I was the only one who was going to determine my future.
“And that’s what I want to tell others in my position: you don’t have to listen to the negativity around you. You can follow your dreams on your terms.”
May 17, 2018
Erik Cassano, 216-987-3577 or firstname.lastname@example.org