OUR VIEW: Noem sets good example with her degreeAs The Daily Republic reported in Monday’s edition, Kristi Noem is a Republican congresswoman, wife, mother, rancher, farmer and hunting lodge owner. Add one more title to Noem’s résumé: college graduate.
As The Daily Republic reported in Monday’s edition, Kristi Noem is a Republican congresswoman, wife, mother, rancher, farmer and hunting lodge owner.
Add one more title to Noem’s résumé: college graduate.
Noem, a Republican from Castlewood, walked across the stage Saturday in Brookings and received a degree during South Dakota State University’s 2012 spring commencement.
She was one of 1,591 graduates at the event, but stood out because of her status as South Dakota’s only member in the U.S. House and also because of her unique backstory.
Noem, 40, went to Northern State University after graduating from Hamlin High School. Two years later, her father died in a farming accident. She also was pregnant with her first child.
She opted to return to her family farm to help out.
As she said Saturday, “life happened.”
But Noem persevered. Later, as she was a mother of three and member of the state Legislature, she resumed her college career, taking courses and fitting in homework whenever she had a spare minute. She was elected to the U.S. House in 2010.
She said she wanted to set an example for her children.
She has. And when she received her degree in political science, she also has set an example for anyone who has heard her story.
Life does happen, and curve balls do tend to be lobbed in everyone’s direction.
But, as Noem said during a speech she gave Saturday, “your journey is determined by how you react.”
We don’t always agree with Noem politically. But all politics aside — after all, she is in a race to retain her seat in Congress — we appreciate that Noem finished this improbable journey, setting an example not only for her own children but also for many others who may feel they can’t finish what they started.