Personal Growth & Professional Development. An OU Interview with Relando: part 5

“The logical consequence of study and thought is action. Otherwise, this whole business of education is a sham.” –James Miller

This is the fifth post of a 7 part series in which I expand on some of my responses to questions from a recent news interview I had about my experiences with working to build more inclusive communities as a student at Oakland University and beyond.

How did your OU Education prepare you for your future (for grad school at U-M, career, social pursuits, etc?)

Attending Oakland helped prepare me for my future because the experiences I had here gave me opportunities to develop academically, personally, and professionally.

It’s rather hard for me to separate the three individually to describe my experience because the opportunities I had to develop in these three areas while at Oakland all worked together in unison to contribute to the ever-changing, ever learning individual that I am at this moment.

I can say that being fortunate enough to have opportunities to work in a wide variety of departments on campus was extremely helpful in terms of increasing my ability to work in a varied environments, and those experiences combined with my education in the Social Work Program gave me a strong foundation upon which I could continue to build as I work towards establishing more equitable and inclusive communities on campuses and beyond into the surrounding communities.

I cannot forget to mention the “off the clock” and out of the classroom time I’ve had where I met many wonderful people and learned lessons that can’t be taught in the classroom. It all comes back to people and their stories. More importantly than the name to me, are the people within the university who helped to make my experience both memorable and transformative.

Grace & Peace,

From Aspiring Humanitarian, Relando Thompkins, MSW



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I’m a Social Justice Educator and Aspiring Humanitarian who is interested in conflict resolution, improving intergroup relations, and building more equitable and inclusive communities.

“Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian” is my blog, where I write about issues of diversity, inclusion, equity, and social justice. By exploring social identities through written word, film & video, and other forms of media, I hope to continue to expand and enrich conversations about social issues that face our society, and to find ways to take social action while encouraging others to do so as well in their own ways.

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