WHITE BEAR LAKE, Minn. (FOX 9) - For Erin Jones and 34 other former Argosy University students, graduation from dental hygiene college almost didn’t happen.
“I’m a mom, a new wife, and now I can officially say I'm a dental hygienist,” began Jones from the podium inside a Century College auditorium.
After Argosy abruptly closed in March, the seniors fought tooth and nail to transfer their credits to another school.
“Everybody was blindsided,” said Jones.
Other programs were either full or much more expensive.
“The call to action was made and President Millender stepped up and came to me and said, ‘What do we need to do this, let’s do it,’” said Tracy Kuny, the dental hygiene program director at Century College, while fighting tears. “Oh, I’m getting emotional. So we did.”
Century College President Angelia Millender and her faculty were happy to get to the root of the problem.
“We can always say no, but the most important thing is to find a way to say yes,” said Millender.
“To think they were three credits away from possibly losing it all was not something I could understand,” said Kuny. “I just thought how could we walk away without doing something? They took their clinical exams this weekend, I was here with them through that, they were just on cloud 10, so happy about it, they’re ready. This is what they want to do.”
Wednesday night, Century College held a special commencement just for the former Argosy students, who all faced the possibility of falling six weeks and three credits short of accomplishing their dreams.
“This is a special graduation for them,” said Millender. “We didn’t want them to have to wait until next year to graduate with the students who are coming through the program right now.”
The milestone now met even if by the skin of their teeth.
“They have profoundly affected 35 lives, we will affect so many other people with what we can do with our work, I mean it truly changed our lives and saved our careers, really,” smiled Jones.