Fall 2023 Graduation Spotlight: Meet Mark Jespersen

Austin Community College District (ACC) celebrates more than 3,700 graduates who were invited to its fall 2023 commencement ceremony. Friends and family will celebrate with graduates on Thursday, December 7, at the H-E-B Center in Cedar Park.

Meet Mark Jespersen, a Marketing major who began as a dual credit student at Lake Travis High School.

Learn more about his ACC journey and the support he received to complete his degree.

How did attending ACC set you up to reach your goals

I’ve always wanted a bachelor’s degree, and the field I’m interested in generally requires one, even for an entry-level job. It was difficult to justify that big price tag, so I put it off for a long time. ACC allowed me to make real progress towards that, on my schedule, and without breaking the bank.

Tell me about your time at ACC

I’ve loved being at ACC. It’s been a long journey, and over the years, I’ve had several majors and levels of involvement, but I’ve always been around the school. I’ve had classes at Rio Grande Campus before it was renovated, the South Austin Campus, and Highland Campus — back when it was just Building 1000 — and now have a mostly online course load. So, I’ve gotten to see a lot of ACC. It’s amazing how many Austinites ACC is set up to service and develop, and I’m proud to have been a Riverbat.

How does it feel to be graduating

I’m actually surprised at how excited and proud I feel. For a long time, I just viewed the associate degree as a checkpoint along the path to a bachelor’s, but the closer to graduation I got, the more it sunk in how big of a deal this is. I’m excited to graduate and can’t wait to see what happens next.

What was your favorite part of attending ACC

The faculty and staff are so supportive, helpful, and insightful. I’ve enjoyed getting to know all sorts of staff members as they’ve helped me along my journey, and I think they’re part of what makes ACC so special.

Any faculty or staff you want to recognize who supported you

The entire Office of College Relations and Marketing staff, whom I’ve worked alongside for the past year, showed me what it’s like to work in a professional marketing environment. Also, shout out to Roy Casagranda — I don’t think he’d remember me but his Texas History course was the best class I’ve ever taken.

What is next for you

I’m planning to head down I-35 to transfer to Texas State and get my bachelor’s in Digital Media Innovation.

What would you tell someone considering applying for college

Just do it. It’s worth it. I fell into the trap that I didn’t need/want it, and I regret that every day. Beyond earning a degree and opening doors for yourself, college allows you to grow personally and develop positively.

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