Reflections on My 30th Birthday

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

As I celebrate my 30th birthday, the words of Romans 8:28 resonate more loudly than ever. As I reflect on my accomplishments, I can't help but be overwhelmed with gratitude. My entire life, from the beginning to this very moment have been a testament to stepping out on faith. I graduated from high school early - a year before most - not knowing what the future would hold. Holding steadfast to the belief that hard work will get you far, I graduated from college at 20. In fact, it was while working in Iona College's admissions office that I found out you could take 18 credits, which for me spelled - altogether now - ELECTIVES! I was starting to embody a true Renaissance woman. I always find myself telling my students at NYU, "It's not about a lack of want to, it's about a lack of know how."

As a college senior in 2006, I had a radio show, produced television shows, was involved in student government. I wanted to get to a place where, when the time came to intern, no one could tell me "no." To compete in the New York environment, I asked myself "What kind of life do you want to live? And more importantly, what does it take to get there?"

Everyone always asked how I balanced it all - working three jobs while staying involved at school. I come from a hard working family. All along my family tree you'll find exceptional leaves: my grandparents graduates of Eastern Michigan University and Howard University (H U you know); my grandmother, the scholar; my grandfather, a Black man from Augusta, Georgia who held couture fashion shows in Paris well into his sixties. Education and the people who modeled it have been paramount. My father wore a suit everyday to work, so that's exactly what I did at my ABC internship. I handed out my my thick, marbled, pink resume at a job fair, clad in a three-piece pinstripe suit. Was I nervous? Of course. But I made it work and I made lifelong friends in the process.

As I ring in this knew year of life, I'm renewing my commitment to continuing the profession I love. It's storytelling that gets me up in the morning. So my advice to you on this day is this: Know what you're good at and what you enjoy - where that path meets is exactly where you're supposed to be.