Janitor graduates from Columbia University after 12 years of balancing full-time work and classesPosted by staff / May 11, 2012
Nearly 20 years ago, Gac Filipaj fled the former war-torn Yugoslavia, leaving behind his family and friends to come to the United States in search of a better life. With no money, no job, and no English language skills, Filipaj faced difficult odds.
He managed to land a job as a janitor at Columbia University, wiping down white boards and emptying trash cans in the halls of the Ivy League school, but Filipaj wanted more. In 2000, he enrolled in classes at the school, taking advantage of the free tuition offered to employees. Twelve years later, after juggling his full-time job and classes, the 52-year-old is graduating with a degree in general studies.
Only good news.