Maybe it’s the countdown, but I feel more at home now than I ever have before here at Embry-Riddle. I had a successful start to my last semester and got approved for graduation! I just have to get through four more classes and I can cross the stage in May, but until then I’m going to enjoy every day leading up to it all!
Classes began last Wednesday, but thanks to all my classes being on Tuesdays and Thursdays I had an especially long weekend! I, of course, began it with a weekly Caribbean Students Association (CSA) meeting. It’s been cold in Daytona lately, so being around my loving islanders was warming by itself. Nothing beats the Caribbean beaches, though! CSA also unveiled their hand-painted crest today that will be hung in the Student Center. In addition to a plane, the student center is also decorated with crests from various clubs and organizations like the African Students Association.
We continued the weekend with a cookout between the dorms with two grills for added warmth. For many of us, it was our first time seeing others since the break. It probably doesn’t sound like a big deal, but at Riddle clubs become family and I was finally seeing my brothers and sisters after a month too long.
On Saturday night, I went to a “State of the Dream Address” at Bethune-Cookman University in honor of the great Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was a truly moving
event that featured individuals in the community working to make a difference throughout Volusia County. The most exciting part of the event was the keynote speaker – Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, author of several books including Tears We Cannot Stop and sociology professor at Georgetown University. He’s an amazing speaker, but to hear his words in person is a truly unique experience. He spoke of King, but he also spoke about race and prejudice in American today from multiple perspectives. He briefly discussed the trending #MeToo that addresses sexual assault and complicity. “[Rosa Parks] was a part of ‘Me Too’ before me too became popular.” The issues we face today are not new and it’s important that we acknowledge the voices that cried out years before.
Dr. Dyson also provided words of encouragement to his predominately undergraduate-oriented audience – “If you’ve prepared yourself, you can take advantage of
opportunity when it comes knocking on your door.” It’s important that we as students take care of ourselves, both physically and mentally, but to also take of each other. We’re here together so why not make the best of it?
Needless to say, it was an amazing and eye-opening weekend. I was fortunate enough to spend it surrounded my family.