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Edet Nsemo

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Mission Accomplished
A strong work ethic and determination take former Marine Edet Nsemo far.

When Edet Nsemo moved to Chicago from the Quad Cities in the middle of his freshman year, he had trouble assimilating into the environment of a large, urban public high school. “The culture shock of coming from a small Catholic school was too much, and I dropped out my junior year,” he explains. Eager to find a way to earn his high school equivalency credential, Nsemo found his way to Oakton, where he took classes to complete his G.E.D.

Four years later, unsatisfied with his career as a movie theater manager, he joined the Marine Corps and, before long, was deployed to Afghanistan, where he received a Purple Heart after his vehicle blew up an IED. Nsemo, who was not severely injured, remained on active duty, and spent time in Thailand and the Philippines before working for the Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps at the Pentagon. “I loved being a Marine, but I began to realize how limited my options were without a college degree,” he admits. So, in 2012, he left active duty, moved back to Chicago with his wife, Alicia, and enrolled at Oakton on the GI bill.

Currently an Oakton Honors Student, vice president of the Student Government, and intern for Congresswoman Jan Schakowski, Nsemo is well on his way to accomplishing his new mission –earning his bachelor’s degree in political science and working behind the scenes to create policy that effects positive change and improves the lives of Americans.


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