Kevin Bruce Jose
Hometown: Randolph, MA
"Growth is maintaining your essence in the midst of adversity."
I've learned everyone has a story and should be respected for their background and for being part of the numerous cultural or student groups on campus.
Growth is maintaining your essence in the midst of adversity. During my time at UMD a lot was thrown at me, but if you just take it one day at a time, manage your time right, remember where you came from and contribute to the campus community—you'll make this one of the best experiences of your life.
Throughout my time at UMass Dartmouth, I dealt with a range of personal and financial obstacles. My greatest challenge was having to leave the University for a while to work in another academic setting and then work to return to UMD. The types of jobs I found were inappropriate for my education level, which made me recognize the importance of a college degree.
It was hard, but I did what I had to do to make it back and continue my academic track. Getting my degree was the most inportant direction for me. Though it's been a long road, the potholes and pitfalls can be overcome with the right attitude.
Don't limit yourself to your own social circle, academic department, or the campus environment as a whole during your time at UMD. The true objective of a university experience is to make you a well-rounded person. It comes from stepping out of your comfort zone sometimes.
This has become such a diverse campus over the years and places like the Frederick Douglass Unity House as well as the Center for Women, Gender & Sexuality give opportunities to branch out and develop your personality and tolerance for issues affecting many different groups.
The person I'd like to thank most of all is my mother, for being there for me in good times and bad, even when a college education was only a dream.
I wouldn't be able to walk away from UMD without the support of the faculty and staff who truly encourage everyone to keep going even when the finish line seems like only a small glimmer in the darkness.
Thanks to my friends made along the way and my Brothers and RHO RHOses past and present of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc., for being my true second family.
Lastly, thank you to the College Now program for making a college education a reality.