A Chapter Begins.

I did it. I graduated. I did this BS.

Two years at Joliet Junior College, and two years at Shampoo Banana--Champaign-Urbana.

Four years, minimal debt (thanks, junior college and scholarships!), and countless memories later, I'm finally a college graduate and a productive member of society--I think? 

See that smile? I'm pretty stoked to be done writing research papers. 

See that smile? I'm pretty stoked to be done writing research papers. 

Oh, and I got a job doing what I love in a location that suits me well. 

In a few weeks, I'll be joining the digital team at FLM+ in Minneapolis as a digital and social media writer. If you know anything or have seen any of my work over the past two years, you know this is a perfect fit for me.

As sad as I am to leave my nest and finally fly away, I'm excited to start a new chapter and start making a life for myself. However, I would be remissed if I didn't include some parting thoughts and advice for the college undergrads looking to maximize their time in the world.

5.) Do your laundry, take showers, work out, and eat healthy when you can. It's not always easy to do all four, but investing your time. It's worth it in the end. 

4.) $10 cover and $4 Blue Guys are rarely worth the price. There is the rare occasion that a sweaty frat boy won't make you feel uncomfortable, but I wouldn't take my chances. While we're on the topic of boys, this next one is for the ladies (and non-gender conforming folks, too). 

3.) Fall madly in love with your body and yourself. You only get one body and one life, and we spend too much time trying to fix what's already amazing and perfect. Your body is powerful, beautiful, and deserves your love. 

2.) Stray from the path. Join a club you've always wanted to try. Take a class just to try something new. My best experiences have come from me pursuing my passions outside of what I thought I should be doing with my time.

1.) Enjoy every last minute. It's cliché, but soon you'll blink, and you'll be saying "see you soon" to some of your best friends. Make memories and enjoy the incredible yet fleeting time you have to be young and kinda carefree. 

Thank you, Champaign-Urbana, for the last four years of memories. It's been real and fun and real fun, but now I have to leave and be a grown-up.

Don't you forget about me. 

Process, not the product.

As my time at the University of Illinois draws to a close, I have started reflecting on my education.

Has the time, money, blood, sweat, and tears been worth it? What have I even learned?

My studies have been in leadership these past four years. Usually, when I tell people I majored in Ag Leadership Education, images of corn fields and classrooms enter their minds. What I've actually been studying is the history of leadership in western civilizations.

It started with believing being a leader was a trait to be inherited, like height or weight. As time marched forward and studies progressed, the world began to understand leadership as a process; a skill that could be cultivated in everyone.

Everyone is different, of course, so everyone experiences leadership differently. For me, leadership is listening to the needs of those around me, and adapting my leadership style to them. It's the Behavioral Approach. Think of it this way--if I were your boss, and you struggled a lot with doing work, I would help you out with it. If you were good, I would be hands-off. It's a win-win for both you and me. 

Emotional intelligence plays into this theory as well. It assess a person's ability to navigate their own and another's emotions. This intelligence helps out in the workplace and really everywhere else in life. One of my instructors said emotional intelligence is far more important and valuable in life than actual intelligence. 

Charles Darwin said once said, "It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change. At the end of the day, there is no one-size-fits-all theory that works for every situation for every leader. The best way to handle the situation is assess and adapt. It's as simple as that.

Hey There

As Fetty Wap and all the cool kids that listen to him say, "Hey. What's Up. Hello."  Welcome to my personal portfolio/website/blog where I will spill all the exciting details of my life, although I'm not sure how exciting the life of a broke college student can be.  

If you're a family member or friend, thank you for following and supporting me, although you're not going to find anything exciting or new that you didn't know.  For those of you that don't really know me, allow me to introduce myself.  I'm 21 and a senior in college, no full-time job offers and excited/anxious/terrified of what this next 365 days will hold.  I also love using slashes to explain feelings because, like the movie Inside Out tells us, we rarely feel only one emotion at a time.  I also really enjoy using quotes because sometimes, people have already said something better, and why reinvent the wheel, ya know?

Get ready for this wild and bumpy ride, folks.  Like the great George Strait once said, "I ain't here for a long time. I'm here for a good time."