By all accounts, Mike Loven of Illinois is an accomplished adult. He has his own staffing business, a happy marriage, and two grown kids. Still, one night in 2016, he woke up feeling a push to start a bachelor’s degree.
At the time, his wife and children were all in school earning their own degrees. So Mike got to work on classes of his own, only he didn’t share the news with anyone in his family. He wanted to support his team while quietly working overtime to reach his own goals!
What made his huge secret even more special was that he was earning his degree from Grand Canyon University, the same school his daughter Taleigh was attending.
Throughout Taleigh’s undergraduate career, Mike cheered her on, never letting her know that he was one of her peers. At least, not until graduation came along!
The father and daughter ended up getting their degrees at the exact same time. One night, after the family had been celebrating Taleigh’s huge accomplishment, Mike came out wearing a GCU alumni shirt — and showing off his diploma. At first, his loved ones thought the school accidentally put his name on Taleigh’s certificate, but before long, they realized the truth. Mike had just completed his degree in finance and economics!
“It really was like keeping a secret for Christmas, it was just four and half years,” Mike said.
Meanwhile, Taleigh was completely shocked and impressed by her dad’s determination.
“During the time that he was working on his degree, he carried the load for us as he has for my entire life,” she told GMA. “His selfless act shows a glimpse to his character. Words truly cannot express how proud I am of him.”
Since he already runs a successful business, there’s no telling what Mike will do with his new degree. Regardless, it’s a symbol of pride and a reminder of all we can accomplish when we set our minds to a goal!
Learn more about Mike’s unbelievable surprise in the video below, and be sure to share this sweet story with your friends.
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