Do you remember your first official day of college when the President of the university or some other high ranking official said those famous words:
“Look to your left, look to your right. One of these people won’t be here in four years.”
At the time, it was a wake up call that undergrad would be a bumpy ride and some people might not have the capacity (in whatever way) to see it through to the end. In effect, it silently increased the tension in the air causing everyone’s guard to go up.
It became every wo(man) for his or herself, instantly validating this country’s individualistic culture.
And as it turns out, the President was right. A lot of those people didn’t make it to graduation.
But, what if…
What if the quote had been a little different?
“Look to your left, look to your right. You are responsible for one another. Your duty is to do whatever it takes to make sure that the two people sitting beside you make it to the finish line at the same time. All of you are in this together.”
In the place of competition, there would have been feelings of family and camaraderie.
Yes, hindsight is 20/20, but I really think things could have been different for some of the people I know that somehow slipped through the cracks.
Even now, I still see a lot of my peers walking around with the attitude that they can conquer the world on their own. I see people hoarding information and resources or turning their back(s) completely on others in need.
What they don’t know is that, while they may get ahead…there’s a certain threshold or limit that they’ll reach if they continue to “travel” alone.
We’re all in this together. In some way, each of us holds an integral piece of someone else’s puzzle.
We’ve got to start helping one another.
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Featured photo is of my best friend and I holding hands at our Howard University graduation ceremony.