May 2011 has seemed so distant, an unattainable place in time for quite some time… it’s hard to think that I graduate from college in a mere two weeks. Wow how time flies. College has provided me so many experiences, so many memories, and a lot of life lessons. I’ve learned about my self, about the world all while finding my innermost passions. After graduation I’ll be hanging around Knoxville for a while longer until August when I move to the booming metropolis of Ames, Iowa (population 40,000) for graduate school! I’m attending Iowa State University to pursue a Master’s in Higher education administration and Student affairs, with a concentration in Social Justice.
I would say that my constant pursuit is to attain social justice for all people. Though it may seem unattainable, my goal is to at least educate people about social injustices around the world, and about identity privilege and how they can make a change. I’ll be spending the rest of my life working with college students, helping them to grow, helping them to understand and develop their own personal values and how their actions affect others.
Being a mentor makes me so happy, and enabling others to achieve their goals is such a great feeling - I couldn’t have picked a better field! You can call me an illogical idealist that floats around in the utopia of my mind; however, I really believe that if I live my life with integrity and by my values of kindness, laughter, and the sanctity of human dignity that I’ll rub off on some people.
I like to think of my dream of changing the world as a pay it forward model. Howard Sinn said, “Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world." Zinn was a genius! Think about, when one person takes a stand, sticking up for what they believe - people notice. And chances are that someone else that noticed had those same passions, yet they were too afraid to express them. Now that person knows they’re not alone, thus giving them courage to speak out in the future.
My pursuit is for justice, my pursuit is for you to advocate for justice, my pursuit is for everyone I come into contact with to gain new insight and to recognize and value the humanity of all people.
Dance like no one is watching,
Elliott N. DeVore