This archived article was written by: April Miller
Most of you don’t know me and that is okay, I don’t know most of you. I am a girl who likes to hide in her room. I am an introvert with extroverted tendencies. I am comfortable talking to people once the conversation started, but don’t like to be the one to start a conversation. Once you get to know me, however, you usually can’t get me to shut up, especially about things I am passionate about.
One of the things I am most passionate about is my education. I started at Utah State University Eastern when it was still the College of Eastern Utah fall 2009. I was the first graduating class of USU-CEU and earned an associate of arts degree. I took a year off before returning to school where I spent a year and a half taking pre-requisite classes for nursing, before I found my true calling in life, social work.
Now I am all set to graduate with a bachelor’s of social work degree and will walk the stage April 30 with many of you. Can I be the first to say, congrats on a job well done? Not everyone makes it to where you are right now. I am the second person in my family to get an associate degree and the first to get a bachelor’s degree.
Never be afraid of taking a path that seems difficult or unfamiliar. One of my favorite poems, “The Road Not Taken,” by Robert Frost ends with this stanza, “I shall be telling this with a sigh, somewhere ages and ages hence: two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” I chose a path that was not without its obstacles. Like many of you, I struggled with money, finding a job, paying for college and making my life work the way I wanted. I persevered and you can as well.
Naeem Callaway said, “Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tiptoe if you must, but take a step.” You never know where you may end up, but you won’t get there without taking that first step. Never give up on your dreams, for you never know where they may lead you.
Let me leave you with these last words from Louis Leo “Lou” Holtz, “This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be one forever; in its place is something that you have left behind…let it be something good.”
So go, be free, my friends. Wander out into that great big world full of adventures, trials and successes and make your mark on the world. You never know who is watching, now or in the future, that wants to follow in your footsteps. Show them that what was one a daunting task, is achievable. Get ready for your new beginning.