Skip to content

Former College Possible student turned coach delivers heartfelt speech at Caps Off

Photo Of Katie Standing At Table/podium Holding A Microphone Smiling At The Audience While Delivering Her Speech.

At last month’s Caps Off community appreciation event hosted by College Possible Omaha, Katie Krzemien, a former College Possible student who now serves as a coach, was recognized as one of the keynote speakers. Having once been a beneficiary of College Possible’s support, Katie returned to pay it forward by guiding current students. At the event, she shared her personal journey and experiences, inspiring the audience with her story.

Hello, everyone. My name is Katie Krzemien. This is my first year of service as a campus-based college success coach at the University of Nebraska Omaha. I have the privilege of working within the Thompson Learning Community and with their amazing staff.

My connection with this organization began as a student at Papillion La Vista High School. Back then, I was determined to pursue higher education, but I was in desperate need of guidance. Thanks to College Possible, I not only received that guidance but so much more. 

I’ll never forget the moment when my coach told me that I was capable of achieving greater things than I had ever planned for myself. It was a small moment, but it was something I had never heard before. Those words stayed with me, echoing in my mind even after I graduated from college. They gave me the courage to pursue my dreams, even if it meant stepping into the unknown. 

Following graduation, I received an offer for my dream job as a fourth-grade teacher at an international school in Chumphon, Thailand. Despite not even owning a passport at the time, the words of my former coach urged me to seize the opportunity. Emboldened by their encouragement, I embraced the chance wholeheartedly. Later, I embarked on a new adventure, relocating to Barcelona, Spain, where I had the privilege of teaching at two additional schools. 

After a few years, I found myself at a crossroads, unsure of my next steps. Remembering my coach’s words, I turned back to College Possible for more guidance and as an opportunity to give back. As a college coach, I now have the privilege of supporting students on their paths to success. Whether it’s helping them overcome obstacles or nudging them to dream bigger, I am reminded every day of the impact that a single moment of encouragement can have. 

Every meeting, event, and interaction is an opportunity to spread the word about College Possible. I thoroughly enjoy collaborating with university staff to ensure my students feel confident to exist, persist, and succeed in this space. And it’s not just the enrolled students we impact; even those who have taken a break from college have been inspired by our interactions. Some are actively re-enrolling, while others are finding the courage to keep going. Watching students overcome incredible barriers to continue this journey has been an incredible honor. 

My role as a college coach extends beyond the students I serve individually as I continue growing both personally and professionally. From recruitment and training to representing my peers, I have learned and continue to learn so much from my fellow coaches and our leadership team. I plan to return for a second term of service, and though I am unsure of what will come after, I will keep my coach’s impactful words with me. 

I hope my story can highlight the importance of the small moments—the words of encouragement, the shared victories, and the guidance provided—that collectively form the foundation of our journey. I urge each of you to reflect on the small moments that have changed your life for the better and to recognize the potential for change that lies within every one of us.

Back To Top