With 2018 coming to a close I had the opportunity to reflect on all the joys, triumphs, trials, successes, and failures that 2018 brought, and with my last semester at UNI starting I have been reflecting on my time at this one of a kind university. One word that comes to mind is: growth. I have always believed that every opportunity you are given is an opportunity to grow whether it be new perspectives or attitudes, new skills, or new ideas.
Becoming a morale captain my first year with UNI Dance Marathon brought about so much growth: the ability to talk in front of people, new leadership skills, and the start of an ever-growing passion to fight for the next generation. My second year in Dance Marathon I had the opportunity to serve as the Assistant Director of Fundraising and ZOOEYMAMA that brought about so much growth. I learned how to be more professional, how to lead a committee, and so much more. Now this year, I am the Director of Morale and I have never been so in love with the amount of challenges and opportunities this position brings. I have the amazing opportunity to lead 40 morale captains to encourage their teams, spread awareness of children with life-threatening illnesses and hype up the University of Northern Iowa to fall in love with UNI Dance Marathon’s mission to end life-threatening illnesses and injuries in children.
It really is a dream come true to look back on these years and see where I am today. Although I would not be where I am today without my first instinct to apply to be a morale captain. It was something completely new, different, and uncomfortable; I did not know anyone else in that room of captains my first year but I knew this opportunity was once in a lifetime and could not be wasted. So I challenge to whoever is reading this to take those opportunities that may make you nervous to embrace them and take it all in - they may lead to some of the best times of your life.