Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

The Journey That Is Georgetown

By Sacasha Brown

This article took me the longest time to write. First, because I did not know which part of my Georgetown experience I wanted to write about. Second, because up until this point it did not really hit me that I will no longer be taking five classes next semester, living in the dormitory or spending all my extra time in the Student Activities Commission office.

Don’t get me wrong, I know that commencement is this Saturday, ay 27. I should know – I have prayed for its arrival and that I would be a part of the procession many times in my four-year career. However, in order for me to “truly” know that I will be graduating, I had to reflect on the tremendous experiences that have made me a stronger and a better person and have taught me lessons that are applicable beyond Healy Gates.

In my first two years at Georgetown, I grappled with the difficulty of wanting to work in the financial industry and still make a difference in society. At that point I thought that both could not, would not, coincide. I went to Professor Robert Bies’ office hours and he changed the lenses that I saw the world through. It was the first time that I realized that one could make a difference without being in the social service or the volunteer service field. Professor Bies made me realize that I can make a difference “wherever I am with whatever I have.” In essence being a “woman for others,” in all that I do rather than in just one area of my life.

Learning this lesson transformed how I interacted and did things at Georgetown. Rather than just being a member and officer in the International Relations Club or the Philodemic Debate Society, I became involved in activities such as the SAC, where I was able to make a difference and still do what I enjoy. Beyond Healy Gates I now know that I have an obligation to help and serve others to change the world around us so that it can be a little bit better than I found it. Even if the demand of my job limits my ability to volunteer, I now realize, thanks to Professor Bies, that if I paint a mural or clean up a neighborhood, I will still have made a difference, no matter how small.

Through helping and doing for others, I have gained great insight and perspective on my society, my community and my life. Through my volunteer and leadership experience, I have learned the importance of teamwork in providing pragmatic solutions to the challenges at hand. Working with my fellow Hoyas, particularly the individuals that made Georgetown Day a reality, has taught me that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change Georgetown (and the world). Indeed, it is the only thing that will.

Beyond Healy Gates, I now know the power of working as a team and realizing that one’s actions as well as attitude can be either an asset or a detriment. In essence the skills that I learned here on the Hilltop will open opportunities, however, only my character and integrity will allow me to achieve the impossible, whatever that may be.

Finally, in my reflecting I realized that Susan Howatch said it best, “life is not about the day you win the prizes [receive the diploma] – it is about all the days in between.”

The diploma that the Class of 2000 and I will receive tomorrow has tremendous meaning. It is not only a piece of paper that my parents will place in a cherrywood frame and hang on our living room wall. For me it is a paper that tells the story of when I thought I would never graduate and wanted to transer from the business school because of my difficulties in Accounting 101. It tells of the many all-nighters that got me to this point, the numerous group meetings upon group meetings, and the times when I forgot that I had a class and watched the sunset from Copley Lawn with a friend. It tells the story of dropping a raw egg in a container that I made with my fellow classmates, the story of flying paper airplanes to see which one would go the furthest, it tells the story of all of us that will graduate tomorrow. The diploma tells how we were able to overcome the challenges, focus on the journey and pave our own path to lead to this day, one of the crossroads in our life.

At this crossroad we will no longer have a place where everybody knows our name – like our Tombs – or where you can call someone at 2 a.m. and know they will answer the phone like it is 2 p.m. But we have been lucky we have been taught to smell the cherry blossoms, to watch the sunset with a friend and talk about nothing, but truly talking about everything that matters. The diploma that we will receive tomorrow is not a paper that is just hung on a wall, it is a celebration of something greater, and a reminder of the growth we underwent here at Georgetown.

Beyond Healy Gates, I will take the journey of Georgetown as a reminder that it is the journey, not the destination that is important. To always be a Hoya – creating and striving for new dreams, new goals and new ideas. It never ends, and that is what’s so exciting – the journey itself. To the members of the Class of 2000 and those that have helped shaped us – I look forward to sharing the journey with you.

Sacasha Brown is a senior in the McDonough School of Business.

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