THE WILL TO SUCCEED
The Wavelength Staff wanted our readers to get to know two outstanding GWC students. Sumair Devani and Morgan Mymon are recognized on campus as the 2009/2010 Homecoming King and Queen. Both have achieved an academic standing of obtaining a 4.0 GPA. Both come from very different backgrounds, where they faced many challenges before obtaining their current status as King and Queen. They serve as ambassadors representing the student body at major functions such as the Courtyard of Honor Ceremony, the Annual Gala Fund Raiser and the Inter Club Council luncheon, to name a few. Both Sumair and Morgan are looking forward to riding on the GWC float in the Huntington Beach 2010 4th of July Parade. We have had the opportunity to speak with both Sumair and Morgan and wish to share a brief profile of each in order for you to appreciate their success at GWC.
Sumair has the distinction of being the first international student to be crowned Homecoming King in the college’s forty three year history. Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Sumair says “Karachi is a metropolitan city, very modern, a business hub, with a very open minded atmosphere. That may surprise our readers.” Sumair is president of the International Students Club, is in his seventh semester at GWC and is looking forward to graduating this May. He is hopeful that he will be accepted at Chapman University where he plans to major in Business Administration. He has had a strong will to succeed in our culture. He remembers his first day and first class at GWC. “It was English 10 and ESL class. At that time, I could not speak English very well and had to have a cousin who also attended GWC, go to class and speak for me. I didn’t know if I was dressed right or looked right for your culture. I was very confused!”
Sumair feels strongly that being involved in extracurricular activities and having caring faculty and staff have helped him attain his success at GWC. He is most appreciative of the help, guidance, and support in the areas of academics, scholarships, leadership and management that he received from Janelle Leighton, Supervisor of the International Students Program and Valerie Venegas, Director of Student Activities.
He concluded the interview with the following statement. “I think that when people say that GWC is an ocean full of opportunity, it is really true. WE have to explore that ocean…”
Morgan is a very positive thinking young woman who has, in the past, experienced life challenges that could have left her with a negative attitude toward life. Instead of a negative outlook such as: “poor me; life stinks; her motto is: Life’s too short to be sad about it. You never know when your last day on earth will be. Have ambition in life; set personal goals; plan for a career. Always look for the best in people.”
Hers is a remarkable philosophy, considering that, when she was six years old, Morgan, her mother and younger brother were homeless and spent a year in a shelter for women and children. Leaving the shelter they juggled with the uncertainty of living with friend and relatives. The living in a shelter experience gave her a lot of courage to succeed. The experience made her want to help other people who find themselves in a similar situation. “When I was in the shelter, we were so grateful for anything that people would give us. People take it for granted, that they have basic things at home, such as a bottle of shampoo, a bottle of conditioner, a bar of soap that is their own. “Today I drive through my neighborhood asking families to donate the sample bottles of shampoo, conditioner and miniature bars of soap they bring home from staying in a hotel, so that I can deliver them to a local shelter. I also encourage others on my Facebook to donate these items and clothing to shelters and charities. These seem like minor contributions, but when you live in a shelter they are major items. It makes a big difference. To give back is an awesome, awesome experience for me.
Morgan is completing her second year at GWC and is a senator for Finance Commission. She plans to transfer to Long Beach State University. She wants to become a Kinesis therapist and later down the line, become a physical therapist. “I want to work with people and help them get their life back on tract.
Morgan stated that she really appreciates the helpfulness of the faculty, the guidance from Valerie Venegas in Student Activities, help from the Tutoring Center and especially help from the Financial Aid Office, who without their help, “I would not be here today.”
She concluded the interview with the following statement: “I like being happy: When you are old, you will have wrinkles. Do you want smiley wrinkles on your face or frowning wrinkles?”