By: Ka Zoua Mary Lor

1 Votes

Courage - Ka Zoua Mary Lor

Western Piedmont Community College


For five years I attended the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG). I was a quiet and shy freshman who was just trying to get through the “four years” of university. Turns out I was not right about that. It took me an extra year to finish my courses and graduate. During those five years, I grew as an adult and student. I learned how to present myself, who my fake friends were, and how to eat alone when I had to balance work, classes, and internship.

At UNCG, I worked part-time at the Student Recreation Center. I received the position of a Facility Supervisor. My job was to ensure all important documents were filled out completely, that all co-workers were doing their job correctly, making sure the environment was safe for patrons’ use. One thing I was not doing well was presenting myself in front of a huge and heated basketball players on the gym court. I am barely five feet and all these players are at least six feet. My appearance did not scare them at all. From previous veterans, I learned that if I use my voice, these basketball players will more likely pay attention. From then on, I have used that as my appearance: “the tiny person with a loud voice.” And it has worked. It has definitely increased my confidence levels.

Throughout college, I made quite a few friends. We were inseparable. We would eat together at the cafeteria, play volleyball at the recreation center, we had movie nights, and everything that friends would do. I hung out with them more often than doing my schoolwork. The school year was coming to an end and we needed a place to stay. One of us suggested we should all live under one roof. The summer ended quickly and we finally moved in together for the next school year. Everything went upside down fairly quick. When I wanted to study, everyone else pushed me to play video games. They weren’t supporting friends. Yes, I came to school to make friends, but I was also there to get an education. We started to get annoyed by one another about parking; who would have the better parking spot? When they had friends over, they were loud and rude during exam week. After I’ve just had about enough, the school year finally came to an end. I packed my belongings and left as soon as I could.

With that being said, I closed myself down. I did not make more friends that year. In order for me to finish school, I would have to learn how to eat and entertain myself. I was fine with it because I got my grades up. I was able to work extra hours and take an internship. I had time to do extracurricular activities like exercise rather than play video games. I became a fighter. Different obstacles take people different places. The place I went to was my graduation. I learned to be an adult. I learned to take my own responsibilities. I’m on the road to another education and I’m sure I can overcome any obstacle.