St. Mary’s College of California my Alma Marter!

by | Mar 2, 2022


It was a wonderful experience for me to have had the opportunity to graduate with a BA in Executive Management at this great college. It took me until age 41to finish my college degree, no kidding aside.

Kids like me in the early 60s, often from financially challenged military families, often left HS after the 11th grade.

I was enlisted in the US Navy 2 days after my 17th birthday in 1963. The Navy changed my life forever. Gave me a career kickstart in the telecommunications business.

When I came home from the Navy, finishing HS, I started college at Harbor Junior Community College, then on to El Camino.


My career with the Western Union Telegraph Company took me to Detroit, Michigan. Later transferred to Seattle, Washington, my credits were transferred to South Seattle Community College. I received my AA there in 1975.

The best part was being accepted at the University of Washington School of Communications in 1976. It was a dream come true.

In 1985 I left Seattle after completing my junior year at UDub, My work at Nortel took me to San Francisco. We lived in Walnut Creek.


Nortel Networks offered me a grant to finish my senior year at St. Mary’s. I graduated in 1989 with a BA. Wow! Imagine that?

If it hadn’t been for my opportunity to attend local community colleges, completing a college education probably wouldn’t have happened.

Completing College was a dream for me, like millions of kids like me back then, like it is in 21st Century. But without a vocational education or college bound goals, it would be near impossible to go past HS.

I feel so grateful and blessed to have graduated from Saint Mary’s College of California. This experience really made me feel ready for my future.

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
View all posts by stevesparks →

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