Ebony Koger

Ebony Koger
Graduate Degrees: 
Associate in Arts, Arizona General Education Curriculum
Graduation Year: 

When Mesa Community College graduate Ebony Koger receives her associate in arts degree this month, it will be the first step in her quest to become a librarian. It’s taken 20 years to overcome the challenges she’s faced to complete her degree, but Koger is excited about continuing her education and earning a master’s degree.

“It’s surreal,” said Koger, 43, of Mesa. “My two sons will be cheering me on, as well as my deceased parents, in spirit, plus my sister who lives in Glendale and my family in Michigan.”

This librarian-to-be loves storytelling and will use her knowledge to promote literacy in poverty-stricken people of color.

“I want to show people that books are fun, teach them about virtual reality and hold storytelling events in children’s schools,” Koger said. “I’d like to encourage people get back into books and expand their minds. The answer is out there.”

Throughout the years, Koger dealt with life as a single mother, limited financial funds, arthritic hips, lack of transportation and more.

She tackled the obstacles she faced with the help of MCC resources such as scholarships, childcare assistance, tutoring and the support of many college professors and staff. Koger said her neighbor has been extremely supportive and full of knowledge as well.

Along the way, Koger was extremely active in assisting other students as they made their way through college. She created a diaper drive on campus, collected 3,000 diapers and worked with the local organization Save the Family to help parents of young children.

“I like to be helpful,” she said. “I’m a problem solver.”

Koger said the greatest challenge was the death of her parents and cousin while attending MCC.

“It made me want to finish for them,” she said. “It gave me my drive.”

Koger would like to thank all the MCC employees who assisted her with her education goals.

“I’d say my neighbor, Maria Dawes, has been a very special influence as well,” she said. “Every time I hit a roadblock, she gave me a detour.”