Andrew Bochnicka was once a young man who kept to himself, but that all changed in college. The Ivy Tech alumni was an exemplary student, and was recognized as the Distinguished Graduate from the Valparaiso campus. The way he used his time while earning a degree showcased a drive, commitment, and heart, that was as big as is dreams.
“I live by the quote ‘If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough,’” Bochnicka said.
Bochnicka earned an Associate’s in Business and plans to attend Indiana University to earn a degree in Law & Public Policy. He hopes to channel his passion for making the world a better place into a career in politics or law. In his younger days, he would never have dreamed of a life in the spotlight.
“I was very much in a bubble,” Bochnicka said.
Bochnicka grew up in the small town of Kouts, where he mostly stuck to himself, a few close friends, and marching band. The world was a big, unknown place and Bochnicka did not know much about things like, culture, business, or politics. College was the catalyst that drove him out of his comfort zone. The IvyHonors graduate discovered a thirst for knowledge.
“When I got to college, there was freedom,” Bochnicka said. “I started to explore the world, and I wanted to take it in all at once.”
On top of his rigorous coursework, Bochnicka worked graveyard shifts at Target to pay for school. He also juggled being president of his school’s Gay Straight Alliance, an Officer on the Honors Council, and a member of the business fraternity Kappa Beta Delta. In addition, he reads news articles a few hours a day.
“I love learning,” Bochnicka said. “I feel compelled to learn more and more and read everything I can.”
Bochnicka’s hard work and dedication did not go unnoticed. He was thrilled to receive that call from the Dean of the Business School, notifying him that he was named the Distinguished Graduate. It felt good to be recognized for his leadership skills and academic achievements. He credits his strong support system for his success.
“No one gets anywhere by themselves,” Bochnicka said. “I had support from everyone on campus and I had great professors, a life coach, a math tutor, and librarians.”
Although Bochnicka personally evolved during his education, he returned to the saxophone as a way to express himself artistically. He started playing in the 5th grade, but put down his instrument for a time when life got hectic. He missed that musical outlet and joined the Valparaiso Community/University Concert Band.
“Playing the sax is a good escape,” Bochnicka said.
Bochnicka looks forward to his new adventures in Bloomington, Indiana as an IU student. He is excited about all the opportunities and various clubs offered. However, he will always hold the Region close to his heart. Attending a community college opened his eyes on the dynamic, diverse, and special area he calls home.
“I’m grateful for the Region,” Bochnicka said.