Values: Learning

From as early as I can remember, I have always been fascinated by learning. It spans from my education to my craft to my passions.

Education has been the driving force in my life since I was eight years old. My dream was to go to Stanford, be an engineer, and get a job next to my dad (who worked in several engineering fields, more often those around computers). My focus on education led me to learn my dream school was actually Notre Dame and I would find IT Management to be the perfect degree for me. It also helped me pursue my coaching career by providing opportunities in grad school where I will soon complete my second master’s degree. School itself isn’t always the most enjoyable but the act of learning something new and interesting is what keeps me involved.

I would say that my craft is softball but from my early sports days, learning was always driving me to be a better athlete and person. I found out how competitive I was because I was driven to learn better ways to swim and develop my form. That competitive nature helped me in the classroom to always better myself. I learned how to be a better basketball player by obsessing over different plays and actions, both through practice with my dad in the backyard and from watching the intricacies of college basketball. Most importantly (I say this because softball is my true love), I had to make up for my initial lack of stature and ability as a younger softball player by learning how to be the smartest one. I didn’t have long enough fingers or the right body to throw hard so I learned how to spin and move the ball by consistent practice. I wasn’t the fastest runner on the base paths so I made sure I learned how to make better reads and understand the defense so I could take an extra base if possible. While I do have my talents and abilities, I would say my ability to learn and be smart was what really made me stand out in the crowd.

Finally, learning has inspired me to follow some of my passions. I have always been fascinated by writing and photography but only recently have I made the decision to dedicate myself to those things. By declaring to myself that I am holding learning as a high value in my life, I am declaring that I will create time to follow those passions and learn about them. I am learning these things because I value the outcome: providing useful information or value to someone, even just if one person, through my writing as well as inspiring myself and others through my photography.

-LJ

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