Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Late Start

The Alumni Brunch took place today at 11 AM. Unfortunately for me, that was the time that I woke up this morning. Thankfully, I was able to get down to the Maddocks Alumni House in 10 minutes. I attribute it mostly to the fact that I got the full-windsor tied probably the fastest I've ever done it, and on the first try too, perfect length and everything.

In any case, the brunch was extremely helpful to me. Along with Joseph, I was able to speak to Elizabeth Hart, the Assistant Director of Admissions. Joseph asked many questions that I'm glad to have listened to the answers to. The most useful to me was her answer to the question of whether or not Brown's open curriculum works for everyone. She was able to explain how the open curriculum allows students to, outside of their concentration, take classes that interest them. It promotes learning for the sake of learning, rather than learning to fulfill a requirement.

Also, I really enjoyed her explanation of how to decide to double major or not. Once we get into college, we should make a list of all the courses outside our first major we want to take. If the list we make has a bunch of classes that would fulfill a second major, then we should go for it. If not, than stick with one.

One other thing I gleaned was during the presentations. Our last speaker challenged us to write on an index card:
1) What we plan do do with our education, basically, our goal
2) Who do we want to affect with our goal
3) Why we want to achieve this
4) A timeline of where we want to be 5, 10, and 20 years from now.

She had shared her story of growing up as a minority student who had experience with both the urban school and the more suburban school; she told us about the questions she had about why there were fewer minorities in the AP classes that she herself was able to take. From there she continued to go on and explain that this exercise she was showing us was to give us the opportunity to analyze our aims and later on, be able to remind ourselves of why we go to college, why we try our hardest to learn and grow, and why, in the end, is it all worth the effort.

I wasn't able to share my card at the program and well I'll share it here: I want to touch lives globally; I want to be able to change peoples lives and improve how people live. Something like public health, non-profits like UNICEF, the UN, or becoming a doctor that travels. I want to be able to help others, and this where I differed from a lot of my peers who wanted to change their community, I wanted to change the world. It's kind of a pretentious goal in my opinion sometimes, I wonder if I'll be able to do all that.

And so why? Why such a high goal? It's because I want to be able to use my abilities to help others. I've always enjoyed serving others and working directly with people. At this point of my life, I figure that I have an ability to enrich lives and work with others well now, why not make it a larger goal of mine.

Finally, the timeline. 5 years from now, I expect myself to be in college or graduating college. In 10 years, I hope to be working in the field, traveling and working with communities. In 20 years, well, I hope to have settled down, traveling less and working more in an office or headquarters type environment, heck maybe even have a family. It's funny thinking about it, because it's so far ahead and subject to so much change. That's what I'm worried about, I've made known what I want to do now and to the public, and if it changes, well what will people think of it? My thought about that is well, aim for the stars, because even if you miss, you'll have at least landed on the moon. I think that as long as I end up somewhere I want to be, it'll be great.

1 comment:

Don Gosney said...


I usually don't even head off to bed until maybe 4 in the morning but I still never sleep past 9:30. So how did you end up still in bed until 11:00? At least you got the tie tied and made it to the brunch without causing an international incident.

Your goals are lofty but why not If you never reach for the sky, why should anyone assume you'll ever get there?

The problem with reaching for the moon, though, is it can become discouraging when you're not able to make the progress you may have envisioned. There are always people. organizations and especially governments who tend to get in the way and erect roadblocks.