When 2020 started, none of us knew how different traveling, birthdays, holidays, family gatherings, etc. would be different. Heck. During my class trip to Panama and San Francisco, we didn’t expect the second half of our trip to be cancelled. It was the beginning of many Zoom and Microsoft Team meetings for my cohort. Fast forward to December 13, 2020, where we all graduated…virtually.
Though many are grieving losses this year, we learned to put forth more effort in all of our relationships. We’ve shown those we love that we DO CARE for them, whether it was more phone/Zoom calls, birthday parades, walks outside, etc. We also didn’t stop caring for strangers: employees allowing school children to use their WiFi to complete school, tipping extra to help service workers, using extra time at home to find goods to donate, helping at-risk populations with groceries, increasing support for small businesses and beyond.
Yes, we all didn’t see 2020 coming, but we managed.
This week I’m celebrating the end of my graduate journey. Thank you to all of my friends and family who checked in, encouraged me and helped me along the way.
Knowledge | /ˈnäləj/| noun | facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.
One of my former (and one of the most intelligent individual I’ve met) bosses told me something that resonates with me nearly 5 years later.
We were in a one-on-one meeting discussing future. During our conversation, he said, “ignorance isn’t always a bad thing.” I responded with cocking my head to the right and furrowed eyebrows. His response, “ignorance isn’t always bad as long as someone is willing to turn that ignorance into knowledge.” I’ve never heard truer words in such simple, yet effective terms.
We are the owners of our knowledge and it’s up to us to educate ourselves and those around us. We cannot let ourselves take everything we read on social media at face value. Don’t be lazy. Do a little digging. Who knows what else you’ll find during your research.
Earlier this year, I began my MBA journey at Northern Illinois University. A one-year cohort program. I’m working full-time, managing classes/group projects/homework, a long-distance relationship; and, somehow, including ‘me time’. But my classmates do not escape my mind. In a class of about 22-23 individuals, as least a third have young families (one with about a 6 month old son). People comment on how I’m able to manage all this…little do they know, I feel insufficient.
During my undergrad, I thought handling a 12 – 15 hour class schedule, a part-time internship, a part-time job, 4 student groups, and a life beyond all that was easy; I thought adulthood would be no problem…boy, was I wrong. I have no idea how my friends found time to have a full-time job while studying for our bachelor’s.
And today? Watching my classmates raise their families, continues to raise those questions. Hearing a child’s coo during an online presentation or listening to my classmates shuffle to mute themselves due to cries, shows what extraordinary individuals they are. Cheers to my classmates, graduation is only 3 classes away.