Following My Lead

Unity, togetherness family oriented environment. Since being here at Shaw I have learned that I work best alone, and that having friends is a plus. That all things old were once new, coming from a time where the world was segregated. All the while understanding that I need to prepare for the bigger picture. Ive learned that even though I am in a sport that you typically wouldn’t qualify as a team effort it is in fact. Being out of place can sometimes work in your favor. Determination is a key factor when it comes to the college environment. Making the place that decides the rest of your future a comfortable environment. Being inspired or encouraged to do something worthwhile. Knowing that no matter what you keeping in mind your foundation and upbringing.

Last resort, didn’t have much to go by, cheapest route. That’s usually one of the stories of a typical Shaw student. Coming to a school that may not have have everything a big school will have. No big fanciful gym, track, huge library, big campus. Nothing really to call its own. As a Shaw student you make the most of what you have. One of the reasons I chose to stay at Shaw was for the opportunity. The opportunity to become something big, make a small name worthwhile. The coaches are also an inspiration they know we have what it takes and we know we have it. I choose to be a Shaw student because I wanna make a difference not only for myself, but for the prolonged history of Shaw. The trophy from conference portrays the start of something new for Shaw and we as a team a unit are ready for more opportunity.

A university a place where you are making a name for yourself. Since this is college you constantly here the buzz about parties, kickbacks, and clubs. Remember the spill about branching out eventually gathered the courage to go out on a a cold yet endearing Thursday night,the first week of college,and experience this club-life so to speak. Knowing that you may not be as out-going as your fellow peers. Getting there and feeling lost in the crowd. Not knowing whether to just sit down and watch, or try to shake what your momma gave you like everyone else. Remembering how you were raised and knowing that you had never experienced this before. Its a new light shining through the crack in the door. do you approach it head on or creep around and peek. Heading home that night and being able to say you walked away with your pride. Knowing that you will never let anyone break you.

This year signifies the 150th anniversary of Shaw University. In remembrance of Shaw’s history I found a photo in “Shaw’s Universe”. It was of the initial construction of the dormitory area. In 1967 the Women’s residence hall was already built and being occupied, but adjacent to it was the beginning of the male dormitory. It is unbelievable to see that the surroundings look so much bigger. There is a huge extravagant fountain accompanied by quaint little trees and plenty of seating areas. When I look at this picture I think to myself what happened? Why does it look so different know than it did then? Time has gone by 150 years to be exact and time changes things. Its sad to say that it doesn’t look as good as it does in the pictures. All is well though the thing about that is “I continue to be interested in new things that seem old and old things that seem new” Jaquelin T. Robertson. I am in agreement with that because I had never seen Shaw before so it is in fact new to me, but all these buildings are old indeed. The bid idea is that a place can change over the years for the better or for the worst. It is what you make it to be.

Segregation a time when mainly blacks and whites refrained from associating with each other. Blacks were told to sit in the back of the bus, eat at different restaurants, play with only those of their skin tone, and drink from fountains that only said colored. Even educational institutions were segregated. Shaw University was the first HBCU to be established in the South after the Civil war.The Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, defines a “part B institution” as: “…any historically black college or university that was established prior to 1964, whose principal mission was, and is, the education of black Americans, and that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or association determined by the Secretary of Education to be a reliable authority as to the quality of training offered or is, according to such an agency or association, making reasonable progress toward accreditation.” In order to progress as a race you must have key motivators. People who show that you can do whatever you put your mind to. Rosa Parks, Jackie Robinson, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Malcolm X, Dr. William E.B Dubois, and many others contributed to not only my success, but many others of my race. When people of this stature come together they create a sort of security for others to fall back on, or add on to. We as a race have created what was stated in the picture as the “New City.” Made a name for our race and continue to do so to this day!

What does it mean to be apart of a big idea, be apart of a tree so to speak. Sprout from the roots or be the foundation. Speaking on those that serve/served our country, pretty much our security. Theres so much that goes into to becoming apart of the service no matter what branch of the military you choose. Everyone has there part, but each one has a strength just like on a tree each branch has a significance to contribute to the ambiance of the tree. Where do you find the courage to say i’m going to serve my country? Even though most go as a last resort they are still braver than anyone who isn’t in the service themselves. For the simple fact that they did something most don’t have the courage to do. Find something most don’t have the courage to do. Find something your courageous about/for and apply it, know who you want to be.

Moving in to college, breaking free from your previous environment, ready for new challenges. Get to your new home away from home the place that you chose to educate you for the future. Taking it as serious as you can knowing you have ample amounts of freedom and endless options for your success. Dormitory area where you meet that new lifetime friend provided you both have the same morals, and mindset outside of the classroom. Maybe you knew the person before you arrived so now that your in a new environment you may confide in each other more than you had in the past. Making your room your own because you will be spending the majority of the year. Make it comfortable and irresistible so that when you feel lost or unsure of something you can go to your room and calm yourself, just as if you were back home in your old room. Being comfortable could be one of the main factors to your college success so make it worth while.

A place where you feel like you don’t fit in any way other than the color of your skin. Ingenuity becomes your best friend, trying to figure out ways to make your college life a success. Opening your mind to other possibilities, learning to accommodate to those around you. Branching out in ways that are not necessarily a norm, but keeping in mind that there are consequences for your actions. Knowing that you were raised to have morals, standards, a mindset of cleanliness and godliness. Feeling like everything happens for a reason even though it may not always be a positive situation. Knowing that no matter what you will always come out on top, because of the foundation you have been built upon from the time you came out the womb.

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