Hometown: Downers Grove, Illinois
Degree: Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering
It was the combo of NIU's College of Engineering and Engineering Technology and its Gymnastics Club that drew 22-year-old Zachary Cipra to campus.
He may have graduated with a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering, but he's not ready to leave. Cipra hopes to eventually earn his Masters of Business Administration at NIU.
For now, he's working in product development for Ideal Industries in Sycamore.
"There's just a gap in my knowledge. To do my job well, I feel like I need [the MBA]," he said.
And, he said, he'd like to keep doing gymnastics at NIU, where he served on the Gymnastic Club's executive board for three years. Friendships within the club and in class helped him succeed, he said.
"Make friends. You can't do it alone," he advises future students. "If you get some friends, you can all help each other out along the way. Make some friends who are above you because they can help you and guide you. The more friends you have, it goes by fast."