Photo of West Point Grad Crying at Ceremony Represents the American Dream
Article and image courtesy of ABC News. This stunning photo, captured by a Army Staff Sgt. Vito T. Bryant, shows tears streaming down Idrache’s face during the graduation ceremony. And while the photo is powerful enough, his response explaining his tears are a great representation of the American Dream.
Here’s what he wrote:
“I want to thank everyone for your kind and thoughtful comments on this picture. SSG Bryant captured a moment that I will never forget. At this moment, I was overwhelmed with emotions.
Three things came to mind and led to those tears. The first is where I started. I am from Haiti and never did I imagine that such honor would be one day bestowed on me.
The second is where I am. Men and women who have preserved the very essence of the human condition stood in that position and took the same oath. Men who preserved the Union in a dark period of this country’s history. Men who scaled the face of adversity and liberated Europe from fascism and nazism. Women like CPT Griest, LT Haver, MAJ Jaster who rewrote the narrative and challenged the status quo to prove themselves worthy of being called Rangers.
The third is my future. Shortly after leave, I will report to FT. Rucker to start flight school. Knowing that one day I will be a pilot is humbling beyond words. I could not help but be flooded with emotions knowing that I will be leading these men and women who are willing to give their all to preserve what we value as the American way of life.
To me, that is the greatest honor. Once again, thank you.”
Donovan Livingston’s Harvard Graduation Speech
Article courtesy of the Charlotte Observer / Bryan Anderson: When Fayetteville native Donovan Livingston took the stage Wednesday to deliver a spoken word poem at a convocation of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, his main concern was inspiring future educators.As an estimated 2,200 people listened, Livingston spoke passionately about the hurdles that black people must overcome in today’s education system.
What he didn’t imagine was that within hours, a video of his speech would go viral. By Friday, it had received more than five million online views, and additional viewers were discovering it every minute.
“How does it feel to go virus?” asked his father, Harold Livingston, slightly confusing the Internet term.
Though Donovan Livingston is proud – and a bit overwhelmed – by the response, he said it is not the online views, likes and retweets that he’s really concerned about. It’s the meaning behind the words that matters most, he said.
“I had no idea the poem would be so well received, but I’m certainly grateful for all the positive attention that it’s been getting, whether it’s from Hillary Clinton or friends that I’ve grown up with my entire life,” Livingston said. “It means the same to me that I was able to touch and inspire some folks for five minutes.”
As he looked back on his experiences in high school and as an undergraduate at UNC-Chapel Hill, Livingston recalled what it was like to sometimes feel left behind. Making sure teachers reach out to such students is important to him, he said.
A former English teacher told him not to recite a poem for his high school graduation speech, Livingston remembered. A college professor at UNC once told him he didn’t belong at the school. And being a black male at the predominantly white institutions of UNC, Columbia University and Harvard added to his feeling like an outsider, he said.
But Livingston’s poem showed how trials only made him stronger.
“Education is no equalizer –
“Rather, it is the sleep that precedes the American Dream.
“So wake up – wake up! Lift your voices
“Until you’ve patched every hole in a child’s broken sky.”
“I wanted people to understand both the legacy of inequalities in education and how we often laud education as this thing that is the great equalizer in our society, and it’s really not,” Livingston said. “In many ways, some education systems work to reinforce inequalities in the country. Highlighting that was really important to me.”
Michael Rodman, Harvard’s assistant dean for communications and marketing, said 29 people entered a competition to deliver the speech at Wednesday’s convocation. After the list was narrowed to eight, it became apparent that Livingston’s planned talk was on a level unlike any other.
“His speech was clearly different,” Rodman said. “It was a combination of the urgency of his message and the timing of his message.”
At the end of his poem, Livingston reminded educators it is their duty to help students reach their potential.
“Together, we can inspire galaxies of greatness
“For generations to come.
“So, no, no, sky is not the limit. It is only the beginning.
A proud husband to wife Lauren and a grateful son of Sheila and Harold, Livingston was driving back to North Carolina on Friday. He next plans to pursue a doctorate in education leadership at UNC Greensboro.
He said he realizes that his words were not only for other educators but for himself, too. And he’s motivated more than ever to guide the next generation of educators and students.
“Love guides all my actions,” Livingston said. “It always has and it always will.”
Next is an inspirational story to inspire you to share the time with your family member. We have to remember that its not just our dreams, but those around us, at any age… Praying for all families to share in the experience. I sure shared with my mom when I was going through finals and needed prayer! Trust God to always make the way…
Father and Daughter Graduate Nursing School Together
Article Shared Courtesy of ABC News BREINIGSVILLE, PA (KTRK) —
Jamie Cernobyl spent 33 years working as a welder, but during a dinner conversation with his daughter, they decided to enroll in nursing school together.
“When I really realized what I wanted to do, it was too late at the time. I had three daughters at the time,” Jamie says.
He put off his dream to make sure his daughters got to chase theirs. Erica, his youngest daughter, had just graduated with a degree in sociology, but realized her true calling was nursing.
“What I told Erica was to do what she wants now. Now was the perfect time for her to reach out and do her dreams, what she wanted to do,” Jamie said.
Erica enrolled in Northampton Community College’s esteemed nursing program, but she wasn’t the only one. It turns out dad’s longtime dream was also to be a nurse. He took his own advice and the father-daughter duo entered the program together.
WFMZ reports that the school couldn’t remember that ever happening there before or remember hearing about it anywhere else either.
Jamie says he couldn’t have done it without his girls, including his wife. Erica says her dad is the role model in every aspect of her life including what she looked for in a guy and found in her fiancé.
“Caring, loving, puts you first, just very supportive, and that’s what he is,” she says.
On Thursday, father and daughter realized their dream together during Northampton Community College’s pinning ceremony.
“I had somebody ask me one time, ‘do you regret not going back then?’ and I said ‘no, because I had a chance to do both.’ I got the chance to be around, which was important to me and now I get to go back and do what I wanted to do now too,” Jamie says.