(Insert flashy dance pose)! “I suppose I have always made some kind of statement,” is the line that I opened up my acceptance speech with at the Auraria PE & Events Center this past Saturday, Februray 11, 2012.
Yes, I’ve been full of it for ages, and this weekend really brought to reality the legacy that I hope to continue. I was awarded a crystal clear, gonna-need-to-build-a-shelf-at-the-studio, piece of honor, entitled ”STATEMent Maker,” from theMetropolitan State College of Denver’s Alumni Association.
“We value the contributions made by our alumni who have made differences in their own lives, the lives of others, their communities and/or their professions through ambitious efforts that reflect the scholarly, entrepreneurial or service-oriented spirit of a Metro State education.”
Wow, not only is this the first official award of my adult life, but I am the inaugural recipient of it too!
This weekend marked a decade of me being out of college and building my career. I have had so many great experiences and challenges along the way. I remain in awe of everything that has led me to this moment. It’s been quite fun to reflect on the ambitious engagements I have achieved.
I created my own degree in Writing and Performance, became President of the Black Student Alliance, organizer for Stop The Hate, worked as a Peer Educator, Student Activities Coordinator and S.T.A.R. (Student Tour and Admissions Representative). My college days were certainly quite formative.
It was so fun to reconnect with some of the Roadrunners, including my former boss, Janell Lindsey. I don’t think I realized how much school pride I actually do have–it is a family and MSCD is this great non-traditional school that allows people of all cultures, ages, sizes, and abilities the opportunity to interact, learn, and become better human beings.
Metro State may be the local, commuter campus and may not be thought of as the great Princetons or Julliards–but I want to say that while those distinguished titles sound great, I do believe it is our experiences and choices that lead us to authentic greatness and connection with humanity. I met so many people on that campus that have shaped who I am, they have inspired me to greatness and introduced me to ideas that have projected me into places I may have never gone on my own. I had the best, most fitting, and USEFUL college education. I encourage my students to continue their education after high school and go for what they want…and dream big and get out of Denver if you can and no matter what, go!
Receiving a distinguished award came with many perks, I got to be spoiled for a full weekend! From a VIP reception and a two-night stay at the Courtyard Marriott, to two tickets to the very current and ‘uncomfortably’ funny, “Two Things You Don’t Talk
About at Dinner,” a jazz luncheon featuring a performance by my Youth TribeCompany, and two homecoming basketball games. I did feel the words home-coming emphasized and it got me thinking about how Metro State (soon to be University) really shaped my path and fully prepared me to become everything that I am today, along with these two people by my side.
As we say, “It’s a great day to be a Roadrunner.” Thank you again to all the Alumni staff for creating this absolutely wonderful weekend and to all the people who have supported me along the way. You did well and I feel completely honored! Now, everybody go out there and make some Statements! I know I always will!