Wow! I am graduating. It’s unbelievable. I remember my first day of orientation in the summer of 2010 just like it was yesterday. I remember the first day of move in, lugging all my belongings up a flight of stairs into 24 Mellen St. I thought I knew all the secrets the world had to offer, and I thought I knew what lay ahead. In fact, I thought I knew myself.
The amount of self discovery that I have had over the past four years as a Lesley University undergraduate student is greater than the any other set of four years in my life. I came in with a shaggy hair cut, bangs past my eyes, barely able to grow a beard, and wearing sweats and gym shorts everyday. I now leave more aware of how to look and act like a professional; I feel ready to face the business world.
I think the biggest thing I learned during my time at Lesley is that life is what you put into it. My first two years, I mainly played baseball, went to class, and had a social life. But the last two, I decided to ramp up the responsibilities. During these past two years is where the majority of my maturity and growth developed. I was a double Major, a Community Advisor, a tutor at the Center for Academic Achievement, Co-Captain of the Baseball Team, one of the team leaders of the Alumni Weekend staff, White Water rafting guide in the summers… I was also a self-employed magician, I held two internships, and all of this while keeping above a 3.4 GPA.
Now, I am not listing all of this to pat myself on the back. I am listing these activities and accomplishments because they are good examples of the opportunities that Lesley offered me. Lesley was able to provide me with the ability to do all of these tasks, and it also offered me the support I needed while taking everything on.
I would be lying if I said that it was easy, or that there were not times that I wanted to quit. What kept me going was the support of my family and friends. The relationships I made here at Lesley are going to last me a lifetime. There are people here who picked me up when life kicked me down. They had confidence in me; they stood by me. I would not be surprised if many of these people will stay in touch with me, be there for my wedding, see my children grow up, and celebrate all of life’s milestones with me in the future.
Lesley taught me how to organize my time, dress professional, and manage stress. I would like to send a HUGE Thank You to Alison Angel, Alice Diamond, and the rest of the Career Resource Center Staff for teaching me about who I truly am and what I would like to pursue. Who knows if I would be on the career path I am now without them. I would also like to thank Maureen Riley, Kim Johnson, Phil Adams, and Gary Smith and all the tutors at the Center for Academic Achievement, who helped me with countless revisions of papers and grad essays, as well as being awesome coworkers and peers. I would like to thank Dr. Robert McGrath, Dr. Donna Halper, and Dr. Heidi Gautschi for being pivotal professors in my undergraduate career. They brought excitement to the classroom and kept classes enjoyable, even when the topics seemed boring. And lastly, my thanks to my baseball coaches and team who helped get through the struggle of the season and were always a supportive group.
I am now off to get a Master’s in Accounting and MBA at Northeastern University. I could not have done it without the help of the people I mentioned above, plus so many others that I have not mentioned. If there is one thing I would tell incoming freshmen, it would be this: So many opportunities for learning and for personal growth will present themselves at Lesley. You just have to be looking for them. I hope you will take advantage of them when they come along. Being at Lesley changed my life for the better, and it can do the same for you.