How do we end up where we are today?
This question always races through my mind when I think about life and its consequences.
Today, I gave a speech at START to incoming first-year Beavers. I am not one to enjoy the limelight often, yet during that quick, nervous speech, I realized that these students were just like me when I began my journey here at OSU: lost (mentally and physically at times), confused, but overall excited for the future.
Fortunately, that sense of confusion, of being lost, and of excitement has yet to leave me – especially today as I write this post.
My name is Sokho, and I am grateful and humbled to be serving the students of Oregon State University with Tonga and the rest of the ASOSU Executive Branch. I have had the opportunity to work in several different places on campus learning what it means, to me, to be responsible, accountable, and reliable. With every new experience, I reaffirm my understanding that with every day comes new opportunities to explore, to grow and to better our selves as individuals and as a community. I do not know everything about our beloved campus, but I do know one thing: I will be there for those who need a helping hand. We are in this journey together, and for this year, during my time as Vice President, I have the honor to be there for any student – for all students, who need someone listen and to act accordingly. I do not know what the future holds, but I do know that together, as one campus, we can strive towards a future united.
My given name, Sokho, is derived from the Pali word “Sukha” or happiness.
If there is one thing I have learned in these past few years, it would be to do what makes you happy – enjoying life to the fullest as time slowly trickles down towards our graduation. With every passing day, we have the ability to reach out, to help and to become a greater part of this every changing campus. Being happy, being content, and being an active, participating member of our university will be the catalysts of the many memories that we will make during our short time here at Oregon State University all the more memorable.
Sometimes we get caught up in the small thing that life throws at us – things that we, as students, and essentially as humans, fret over. But we will eventually forget this times: that late paper, the failed quiz, or missed opportunity to go to office hours, date with a potential partner, or chance to socialize. If I am sure about one thing, I am sure that eventually we will fade into the memory of this campus – a part of this school’s long and rich history.
Looking at pictures, talking to alumni, and reading about our school, I think to myself, what have we done to add to this school’s history? What tradition have we added? What traditions have we carried on with pride and integrity? How will our actions be remembered?
We may not be perfect (hence the term student), but knowing who we are and where we come from carries its weight in gold. It is all that we have – it is what makes us unique as individuals, as Beavers and as members of a thriving, ever-changing, dynamic community.
My favorite spot to sit and think is up on the 5th floor rotunda in the Valley Library. If you have yet to experience this -go up there, sit at a table and look out at the vale of beautiful mountains that surrounds our school. One day, when we look back at our time here, we want to remember those times we enjoyed. Those shady slopes. The countless hours we spend walking OSU’s pathways after studying. We remember the friends, the mentors, and the people who shaped our lives.
When thinking about how we end up where we are and about who we are, we think back to where we studied at, where we worked, where learned and grew.
When I get carried back to OSU, I want to be able to reminisce with pride and to look at what we were able to shape – united, and as one.
Alma mater calls,
Together we can make a difference.
ASOSU Vice President 2011-2012
Oregon State University
“Within a vale of western mountains,
There’s a college we hold dear.
Her shady slopes and fountains
Oft to me appear.
I love to wander on the pathway
Down to the Trysting Tree,
For there again I see in fancy,
Old friends dear to me.
Carry me back to OSU,
Back to her vine-clad halls;
Thus fondly ever in my mem’ry
Alma Mater calls.”