My name is Alex Porter and I am currently the Great Basin College GEAR UP Ambassador. Starting in June 2017, I’m still in my first year of the position and enjoying every minute of it. Within GBC’s 86,500 square miles, two time zones, and ten of Nevada’s largest counties, I serve around 1,000 students. My primary duties consist of bridging the gap between high school and college by providing services to prepare students and make sure they are ready for college; or in other words, developing a “college-going culture”. I was fortunate to grow up in the small, rural town of Eureka, NV and believe that this has given me a unique stance to relate to the students that I serve. This gives me the opportunity to share the resources that are virtually at students’ fingertips but they may not realize are available to them because of their location or situation.

Although Eureka County High School is not a designated GEAR UP school and I wasn’t in the GEAR UP program in my youth, I was able to pursue a higher education at Great Basin College. During my time as a student I chose to be very involved on campus and was able to be introduced to GEAR UP then by the previous Ambassador. The work that GEAR UP does has always been admirable to me and I consider myself very lucky to be in the forefront of those efforts now. GBC was such a large stepping stone in my life and I only hope that I can share my experience with others to show them that anything they put their mind to is possible and that it’s obtainable right here in Nevada.

A lot of the events I’ve done have been, first and foremost, to provide information and awareness of Great Basin College along with the other Nevada System of Higher Education institutions while making it as enjoyable as possible. Most of this has consisted of high school visits to give classroom presentations, attending College and Career Fairs, and earlier in the academic year it was FAFSA Aid Workshops. In the very near future I will be hosting college visits on the GBC campus. These tours are going to be enhanced by STEM workshops throughout the day led by expert instructors of GBC. I believe that these are going to be a lot of fun and can’t wait for the students to experience them!! #GEARUPWorks