Our lives are often defined by milestones – events that we can look back on as benchmarks along the journey called life. As we entered this new year of 2020, we entered a year that seemed almost too far away to imagine as we were living through the Y2K milestone. I am sobered by the fact that for most of our students at LCC, Y2K happened before they were born. While our students have experienced only a short lifetime of milestones, I recognize that part of our role as a university is to establish milestones for them.
One of our LCC milestones takes place every January. We celebrate “100 Days Before Graduation” with our senior students, not as a premature congratulations with 3 months to go until Commencement, but rather as the beginning of a realization of their transition from students to alumni. It’s a simple but powerful message, a milestone that causes a new level of self-reflection by our students, our soon-to-be alumni. Who will I be after I leave LCC? How will I stay connected to my friends and classmates from over 50 countries? How can I ensure that I end my LCC experience well?
I was privileged to engage in a brief conversation with two stellar young women at this event last week – one from Ukraine, and one from Albania. They had already made a pact – and had marked their calendars for January 1, 2030. On that day, they plan to meet in Italy. Both of them have the goal to be self-employed by that date. And if they have no boss on that day, they will donate to LCC! Wow! I’m waiting for January 1, 2030! (And I encouraged them to consider supporting LCC even if they have bosses. They smiled and agreed.)
As we move through the Spring Semester, continue to keep our students in your prayers. For some of them, the milestones of a thesis defense and graduation are ahead of them. For others, the excitement of applying to be a student leader for next year is a milestone. For others, it’s a winning record in basketball or football. For still others, it’s the joy and challenge of being part of the Mission Trip in May.
We are grateful to each of you for your continued support for our students. Their LCC milestones are forever part of their narrative. And you are part of making that possible. May God bless you for being a blessing.
Marlene Wall, PhD