My sophomore year has taken me on the ultimate journey of self-realization. I have begun to put into action the things I am passionate about – writing, business, and community involvement. Much of it has happened by chance. People that I have been working with connected me with people who were able to help me grow professionally. The entire year has been a domino effect of positivity and growth.
About a week before my academic year began I signed up to become a weekly contributor to Tuskegee’s Odyssey Online community. Writing soon came to be an expressive outlet for me. Through the Odyssey Online, I could share my interests and passions. Once school started, I heard about auditions for Melanination. I was familiar with the weekly shows they had during my freshman year and was interested in getting involved. I ultimately became a writer for the website and I have also designed flyers for events and helped with website maintenance. By the end of the fall semester I had become one of ten newest members of Pi Sigma Epsilon Sales and Marketing Fraternity, Inc.
Over the winter break I decided I wanted to run for Student Government Association Judicial Advisor. I had never campaigned for any position before and this experience allowed me to break out of my shell and meet new people on campus. Even though I did not win, the experience allowed me to connect with more people and enhance my public speaking skills. Once the campaign was over, I suddenly had more time on my hands. I decided to volunteer at Shady Grove Blueberry Farm. There I formally met Ms. Josie Gbadamosi and had my first hands on experience at a Tuskegee farm. Around the same time, I met Karin Hopkins and Jazlyn Fuller, founders and owners of Echoboom. These opportunities simultaneously allowed me to work directly with black-owned businesses and watch the steps they take in growing and developing in the Tuskegee Community.
During my sophomore year, I was busier than I ever have been, I juggled work, school, community work, and other general extra-curricular activities. It was a lot of hard work, but I cannot complain because everything I did this year, made me better in some form. In some cases, I enhanced my creativity, and in others I had to use my leadership skills. Through all of this, I was blessed to maintain a 4.0 GPA. All of my growth and development did not negatively affect me academically.
I am now going into my junior year excited for what is to come. The relationships that have developed last year, will hopefully blossom and expand next year.