By Andrew Holman | Sports Editor
One day you are unpacking your life into a dorm room hoping to find your home away from home, and before you know it, you are picking up your cap and gown from the campus bookstore and staring down the last two weeks of your college life.
Life comes at you fast. Real fast. That’s why I challenge all of you reading this to embrace the journey. It’s not always going to be easy. It might not always live up to your expectations. But when that journey comes to an end, you are inevitably going to be wishing that you had made the most of it.
Now it’s time for me to embark on my next journey. Many graduates leave college fearing the next stage of their lives. I can’t wait.
For the better part of the past 20 years, I have been working toward the same dream, which has been to pursue a career in the world of sports. Being from Cleveland, the “nothing is given, everything is earned,” motto has been instilled in me since day one, and bringing that mindset and work ethic to campus was crucial to developing my skills over the past three years.
My time at Duquesne University provided me with so many valuable opportunities which have helped me to become an experienced up-and-comer in the very competitive sports communications industry.
I was able to find my voice as the play-by-play commentator for Duquesne Athletics alongside my good friend Matt Voggel for a variety of sports on campus. I was able to serve as the Vice President of Duquesne’s PRSSA chapter. Additionally, with my educational background, I was able to secure opportunities in my field with Lifebanc, Trib-Live Sports Radio, the Akron Racers, Notre Dame College Athletics and, most recently, the Pittsburgh Steelers.
And, of course, I had the privilege of holding the sports editor position for the 2016-17 school year, as well as being a sports writer for the past three years with The Duquesne Duke.
Thank you to all of you who have read and supported my work. Thank you to former editor-in-chief Julian Routh and our advisor Bobby Kerlik for challenging me and developing me as a sports writer. Thank you to all of the coaches and athletes who I have bothered over the years, but who have treated me with the utmost respect. Thank you to Dave Saba and Ryan Gavatorta for all of your assistance when working with Athletics.
Thank you to my professors, especially Professor Healy, for opening doors for me and providing me with a strong educational foundation.
Thank you to all the people who told me my dream was out of reach, impossible or too ambitious. Without your motivation, I might have just given up like so many others have. I will prove you wrong.
Thank you to Nick. You certainly proved the grumpy old man stereotype wrong, and our five minute conversations were always a pleasure while I perfected your personalized grande caramel frappucino with extra caramel drizzle. Every time you came into my Starbucks, you always made it a point to ask how my dream was coming along and you told me that I was going to “make it” more times than anyone else ever has. For that I thank you, and I hope somehow this message finds you.
Thank you to my parents for all of their support over the last 20 years, and for encouraging me to pursue my dream instead of chasing me away from it like so many others tried to do. Thank you to my siblings for lifting my spirits every time I came home for break and for serving as my biggest fans. Thank you to my best friends for all the laughs, the phone calls and the memories that I won’t soon forget. Thank you to my girlfriend for all of her endless love and support.
Each of you have helped me to reach this point in my life in your own unique way.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to go out there and chase your dreams. Don’t be afraid to stand out.
“The longer you have to wait for something, the more you will appreciate it when it finally arrives. The harder you have to fight for something, the more priceless it will become once you achieve it. And the more pain you have to endure on your journey, the sweeter the arrival at your destination. All good things are worth waiting for and worth fighting for.”