Name: Shondell Coleman
Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
Committee: Engaged Learning/ Civic Engagement, Chair
Throughout my college experience at NIU I have seen an individual grow over the years from a boy to a young man. I always question myself; how can you surpass such a challenge growing up in a bad environment, being first generation to attend college, and develop a gift of motivation that will lead to success. The answer was that I wanted something better than what I’ve seen as a child growing up. One thing that really helped me become the person that I am today was coming to NIU. Never did I see myself becoming President of an organization and taking on other leadership roles, or networking with a lot of people. I arrived to NIU as a freshman with a goal; to get involved on campus and network with people.
As I got involved I began networking and finding my comfort zone, which lead me to getting more involve that also increased my networking. The more I participated, the more I knew people and grown from experience. I knew for a fact what I wanted, and began taking advantage of all my resources that was offered through NIU. College is all about finding yourself and growth, and because I got involve on campus it really has given me the experience I needed to graduate and use toward my career development. It also helped me talk to others in a professional setting, which leaded me to getting a great internship. I am proud to say I’m a HUSKIE and that NIU was the best thing that ever happened to me in many ways.
Coming in as a business major and approaching the College of Business was more than a highlight for me, but a new home that will prepare me for the real world. I was exposed to speakers, faculties, and successful people whom I kept in touch with. As a college student I surrounded myself with positive people and ensured that my main goal was to gain the experience I needed to graduate, and to use as a tool toward my future career. Of course there are obstacles you have to overcome, but that’s all part of life; testing your ability to make it towards the finish line.
The most unique thing about me is that I am a very driven individual who has goals to one day being successful. My motivation comes from looking at where I was raise to saying, “Hey, I want better” and so I came up with something: When I graduate here from NIU, I plan to work full-time for a year or two where I will attend grad school at Harvard to obtain a MBA in business. From there I plan to start up a business that will make a difference in people lives. As one man once told me:
"The secret of success is learning how to use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you do that, you're in control of your life. If you don't, life controls you."