Going for Gold

by Olivia Miller

Right now over 10,000 athletes are competing in the summer Olympics in Rio; each athlete has dedicated countless hours to perfect their sport and have the opportunity to compete during this highly anticipated event. For me, it is my favorite sporting event – I love watching people come together, seeing all these countries coming together, learning about inspiring individuals - of all different background becoming a star, listening to Bob Costas and the Olympics theme song – all from the comfort of my couch. Some of my favorite Olympic memories include staying up for the 2000 opening ceremonies to watch Myanmar (my assigned country for class), “speed skating” like Apollo Anton Ohno in PE, watching Michael Phelps (aka the GOAT) through three (now four) Olympics, and thousands of people singing “Hey Jude” with Paul McCartney. But on a more serious note, the Olympics are a perfect opportunity to evaluate, or reevaluate where one is in life, both their personal and professional life.

The Olympics happen only every four years, and lasts only two and a half weeks, with some events lasting only 10 seconds, but these athletes are dedicated and bring the world together to wonder and be inspired. In the world of student affairs, I like to think we can do the same thing, just not at the same level. We dedicate our time to work on all aspects of our jobs, but for example some things only last a few weeks – enrollment, orientation, RA training, the annual event in programming. I know it is not exactly the same thing, but to me, we are Olympians in our own right and going for gold with our students.

This bring me to an idea, or a competition if you will. To reflect and think of some goals (or your Olympic event if you will), and training for it for the next Olympics. What are some goals you have and would like to meet by 2024 when we turn our eyes to Tokyo? I myself have a few goals for the next four years – attend more conferences, present research at conferences, hold a leadership position within our university’s advising community, to name a few. Some personal goals are to continue training for running events – possibly even running a marathon (my uncle has promised any niece who would run one, he would take us to Athens home of the first Olympics and marathon), writing more snail mail (like our staff writer Mandi), and possibly create my own blog.

So what event are you competing in, hoping for gold? What will your training look like? Which Olympic event is your favorite – and what is your favorite Olympic memory?

Student Affairs - the First Years

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