Virgil Parker, Howard University News Service
The Howard University Office of Student Life & Activities (SLA) recently hosted another edition of their speaker series, entitled “What’s Tea? Tuesdays.” The series welcomes speaker who provide essential advice to students. Participating speakers have demonstrated expertise on topics such as ‘how to buy a home’ and ‘pursuing risks during the post-graduation stage’.
SLA hosted Sharonda Arnold Ocean for its speaker series earlier this month. The event took place on the live platform for Howard SLA’s Instagram account.
Ocean is known as a life coach, speaker and poet. She encouraged students to take risks after college and take advantage of positive opportunities as they present themselves. Ocean told the audience that, “right now is the most opportune time that you will ever have.” She went on to say, “why not take that risk.” Ocean encouraged students to pursue job opportunities and initiatives that may seem intimidating but could reap positive benefits. Also, she told the students that they should recognize their previous victories so that they can have the faith to move forward through challenges.
Leah Young, a senior Strategic Legal Management Communications major and with a minor Africana Studies at Howard University, provided her thoughts about Oceans advice, even though she did not attend the event. Young said, “I think taking risks at an early stage is the best bet because you have more room for error.” Young went on to say, “people are not expecting much from you because you are green. Taking risks is something that everyone should do. They help us form better character.”
Ocean shared that one of her biggest challenges from transitioning from student to adulthood was creating a trajectory or a plan for the next 10 years. She recommends that students should not let salary be the only indicator for where they should decide to go for job opportunities. Ocean recommends that graduates consider additional factors that could benefit a person’s long-term career goals.
Aryana Webb, a junior Business Management major at Howard University, provided her thoughts about her priorities for life after college. Webb did not attend the event. However, she said, “my priority is getting a foot in the door, gaining experience, and seeing what I really like and dislike in my professional life.” Webb went on to say, “however should a promising opportunity present itself I would consider it.”
Ocean also gave advice about how employees can secure a larger salary. Ocean said that sometimes it is hard to get a salary increase if you stay at the same place for many years. She recommends that employees change companies every few years to receive different opportunities.
Philip Scholer, a Georgetown University student who majors in American Studies and minors in Education, shared his perspective about what he looks for in meaningful work opportunities.
Sholer did not attend the event. However, he said, “the things I most consider is how helpful the work is. For example, I think tutoring or working in education is more helpful than business consulting.” Ocean concluded the event by sharing that “everything that you need is inside of you.” She also wanted the audience to know that, “Failure and defeated are never final.” Ocean affirms that a person can still win because they have won before.