Walking from Jenkins hall to Rogers Student Center, a student can see every color and type of person represented.
College is about diversity, and TJC is not a stranger to diversity in the classroom. But that diversity ends when the class is over and everyone leaves, searching out that clique that they feel most comfortable in.
Diversity isn’t just having a student population that has a large number of every type of person present, but to have them all interacting with each other freely without fear of harassment.
For my article on Rogers, I sat in front of Rodgers for hours on two different days.
The first day I sat there, I was nervous. Not because I felt like I was going to get harassed, but because I had stepped out of my comfort zone into another group that I felt I didn’t have much in common with.
I was there for 30 minutes until Seedy walked over to me and asked me what I was doing. Now I admit, I probably looked unusual. I was sitting on the steps observing everyone, by myself and taking notes on what I saw. After telling her who I was and what I was doing, we talked for a while.
She instantly made me feel comfortable. She told me about herself, and I was impressed by her achievements and her motivations as to what she wanted to do with school. She had ideas I had never considered before. She made me think, laugh and listened to me when I gave her advice on things she wanted to do here at TJC.
If I had never written that article, I would have been like the majority of students on campus and kept walking by her and everyone that sits in front of Rogers. I never would have met that person who in a few moments made me comfortable, made me think, made me laugh and welcomed me into a group I would otherwise think I could not be apart of.
Every single person has something to offer to everyone else. It’s these boundaries we set to keep ourselves away from people that we think we could gain nothing from. If we could just, for a moment, step out of our comfort zones and start a conversation with someone we feel we had nothing in common with, then maybe we wouldn’t see the groups of white people outside of Jenkins, or the group of Hispanics next to the library, or the International students sitting on the bench, or the black people in front of Rogers.
Maybe would we see the melting pot that TJC is and everyone exchanging thoughts, dreams, ideas or just stories.
I hope that everyone will be brave enough to meet their own “Seedy” and that, when they do, she broadens their horizons, too.