Written by: John Livengood
I remember walking into my alma mater, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, with a sense of wonder and a hint of vagueness. I didn’t have any clue of what I wanted to do. I just knew I love media , so I studied english and telecommunications. I couldn’t find my classes, had no job, stayed on a weird looking campus dorm, was out of shape, and needed to sleep. Looking back, I wasn’t nowhere near ready to succeed my first week. I wanted to go home but I decided to stick it.
I went out and made friends that I still hang out with this days. The three friends were Omari, Jordan, and Terrell. Later on we became the first four original members of the HBCU Roundtable. “Turn up or transfer,” the motto for that first week in particular. It helped me transform from an introvert to an extrovert and the first week help me a lot with that process. I met people from Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, New Jersey, and other places. Process the new slang from other regions of the east coast took some time, and it confused me.
Another thing I wasn’t used to, being a young man of the tender age of 18, is having a lot of beautiful, single women around me and having the ability get drunk every day. I learned quickly during that week that I had to make my grades a priority over desires. I learned to knocked out my school work during the week, and treat my desires during the weekend. From that point on I decided to stick with school and make it my comfort zone.
First Week of Grad School
That decision paid off big time! I know am a part owner of a media LLC., a grad student at a young age on a full scholarship, have a network of 300,000 plus, and have affirmed my faith in God. That doesn't mean i don’t have challenges but with a different sense of maturity, they don’t seem to be as big as it would’ve been my first week of undergrad.
Now I know what I want to be in life! I will be the best media practitioner, business owner, actor, and educator this world has seen so far. So far, I love the sense of learning from well rounded professors excites me compared to when I was 18, and had no idea of where higher education can take my career path. I even decided after I get my masters in organizational communications concentrating in public relations, I will pursue my JD in media.
The sense of nostalgia of having another first week of education hit me, and flashbacks of undergrad have hit me this whole week. It’ amazing God granted me this opportunity. Now it’s time for me to take this opportunity and run with it.
Ventress Johnson (TXSU) Sharon Mills (UMES)