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1/8 of the Way

So its a new semester and a new year. New classes, professors and a new routine but its the beginning of a process that just ended. My first semester at Penn State was amazing to say the least. I have to say I am truly lucky to be a Nittany Lion. A teacher in my high school once asked me where I would be going to college and I told him ” I still am waiting to hear from UNC but if I get in there it will definitely be an extremely tough decision deciding between a Nittany Lion and a TarHeel.” He quickly responded by saying, “You really shouldn’t choose based on the mascot and their sports its a lot more than that”.  I replied ” I know but its the spirit of a school”

I think that spirit is what attracted me most to PSU. I grew up a huge sports fan, embodying the word passion and emotion as huge parts of my being and sports undoubtedly shaped the person I am now. However, that day when that teacher told me that a mascot doesn’t matter I wanted to prove him wrong. It isn’t about the mascot it is about everything they stand for, the traditions they have started, and the legacy that they have left for their school. A Nittany Lion is not just an animal, it is a person, a PSU alumni, student, faculty member, staff member, and proud parent. Lion’s travel not in packs but in prides, and I believe that the Lion Pride at PSU is a great one. To be a member of this pride means so much more than taking classes in State College, it is about the people you meet, the experiences you share, and the way that this University shapes you as a person by  instilling goals, life lessons, and molding every student who has ever lived in its dorms.

I believe its much more than just a sports team that we are all cheering for when 110,000 of us crowd around a 1.3 acre patch of grass just to watch young men play a game. I believe that a sense of a larger being, and a purpose is given to all of us. 110,000 people become one voice, unanimously echoing cheers and chants that carry a legacy of their own passed down from class to class, seniors to freshman. It is this sense of tradition, pride, and impact that makes a Nittany Lion more than just a Mascot. The Nittany Lion stands for everything Penn State, from the 46 hour Dance Marathon for Pediatric Cancer to the honor of a Penn State degree, to the alumni who still proudly represent the school colors, to the 6 year old who knows every football players name, and even the people who donate hundreds of millions of dollars to this university because they know that Penn State is working to make this world a better place. 110,000 people crowd around that field because they want to show everyone that Penn State has more pride for our school than any other place in the country.

I have only completed one semester here at PSU but looking back now I could have never imagined how proud I would be to say that I am a Nittany Lion. I have made amazing friends, learned amazing things, and started a route through life that will lead to success. I feel truly lucky to have been given this opportunity and I would be crazy to let it slip by.

Letting this opportunity pass by has never in my life been an option. No matter what situation I am put in I make sure to make the best of it, set goals, have a dream larger than life, and aim for the stars. Those dreams are what inspire and motivate me and my dreams slowly become my reality. I dream big not because I am arrogant or cocky, but because in my heart I know that with discipline, and dedication anything is within my reach. My dreams will always be lofty and will never falter because no matter what setbacks I face my discipline keeps me on course. Why sacrifice the dreams of the future, for a joy in the present, it is this which keeps me going, keeps me motivated and makes me the person that I am. I will always look to the future and of things to come, you cannot live in the present without being left behind by the rest of the world, I want to live in the future and lead this world in a new direction, change its course, and leave a lasting impact.

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2 responses

  1. Carmine

    Jarrod, you make me so proud to be your father. Your latest blog is fabulous, your best yet. You are already reaching many of your dreams and the future is yours. Keep your goals set high and enjoy all the moments of your life. You are a leader, motivated with a good heart, a clear purpose, and an appreciation for the people around you. You have always understood that family and your ancestry along with the traditions that make the experiences you are living run deeper that simply symbols. These traditions do matter and do shape a person’s life. As you grow in your life’s experiences you will expand your areas of influence. As your influence grows so does your ability to shape your life and the people you motivate who surround you. The circle expands and the influence you have continues to expand. You simply need to stay true to yourself and your beliefs. Keep your heart pure, and use your knowledge to help others as you help yourself to grow. I love you more than you will ever know, Dad XXXOOO

    January 16, 2011 at 5:11 am

    • Thank you dad! I love you, miss you guys already and cant wait to see you guys over break! I’ll keep doing what I came here to do, make you guys proud and live up to the standards I know I can hold myself to!

      Love Jarrod

      January 17, 2011 at 5:47 am

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