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Tag: goals

Do It Because of Passion, Not for Position: A Reflection on NSBE Annual Convention

I thought I was going to give a full blown overview on my experience at the NSBE National Convention, but I think I’m just going to reflect on one of the things that was said at the Golden Torch Awards. I’m paraphrasing, I think, because my memory is fleeting at the moment. But, one of the awards recipients said to do [what you’re doing] for passion, not for position. She was of course referencing her NSBE executive board position, but it really hit me because it meant so more more when I heard it.

A lot of people tend to get into fields and fight for positions for money or attention/recognition/bragging rights. For some people, this is motivation enough to succeed and effectively do their jobs. But, what about everyone else?

I can only speak subjectively, so I will talk about my personal experience. When I am passionate about something, everything follows naturally. Take my passion for academic diversity initiatives, for example. Because I care so deeply about making a change, I’ve associated myself with NSBE (providing job opportunities and networking for me), received an assistantship at Pitt, started writing my first successful blog, got the opportunity to travel, and in an indirect way, was prepared for internship interviews (I was able to translate my passion into work ethic and communication skills). All of these opportunities sprouted from decisions I made based on passion; but, they provided me so much more beyond what I love because others recognized that enthusiasm and all of the skills and talents that came along with it. From my experience, if I’m passionate about what I’m doing, I am more willing to go above and beyond, which in turn opens doors and propels me to greater opportunities. Only then will financial stability, titles, and recognition reveal themselves to me.

Because I can’t give you more than a personal point of view, I’ll stop here, hope I sparked something in you, and give you these following quotes, which I believe sum up the point I was trying to get across:

Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you. -Oprah Winfrey

It’s hard to tell with these Internet startups if they’re really interested in building companies or if they’re just interested in the money. I can tell you, though: If they don’t really want to build a company, they won’t luck into it. That’s because it’s so hard that if you don’t have a passion, you’ll give up. – Steve Jobs


I Dropped a Course.

A few weeks ago, I chose to drop one of my courses, changing my credits from 12 to 9, and ultimately changing my graduation date from December 2014 to May 2015.

This was not an easy decision as I’ve always seen dropping a course as quitting. Actually, this was the first time I dropped a course in the beginning of the semester before I knew how well I would do. Dropping this course was something bigger than quitting. It was about pacing myself and ensuring that I wasn’t burned out before I could actually reach my ultimate goal, graduating.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes my mind is so set on what I want to do and what I think should happen, I sabotage myself from taking a better path. My pride wanted me to finish in three semesters. It didn’t want me to take my time. But what sense did that make?

The iSchool gives you 2 years to finish an MSIS degree on a full-time basis. This gives me more time to do other things that would give me a fulfilling experience. I can do research, travel, lead organizations, enter into contests, effectively do my job, support other students/friends and still have time to explore Pittburgh. If I had kept my four courses, my head would have never left my books to breathe!

I know that last semester, I was ready to really challenge myself and keep pushing. But, goals change! I only intend on being in Pittsburgh for two years. I really and truly love my time here as a friend, student, and Commonwealth Scholar. So, while I have the opportunity, I want a well-rounded experience of what life and the iSchool has to offer. I can still be an amazing student. As they say, “slow and steady wins the race!”

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