First-year Russ College students “start up” their year
By Joe Barbaree and Colleen Carow
ATHENS, Ohio (Sept. 19, 2011) -- Russ College freshmen got a warm welcome to fall quarter on Tuesday with an Italian buffet and words of wisdom from fellow students, faculty and Russ College board of visitors member Paul Gydosh, BSEE '74.
After students got a chance to ask their burning questions of faculty in their departments and Engineering Ambassadors, Gydosh, the evening’s keynote speaker, made an effort to ease their anxiety and prepare them for a year of necessarily tough commitment.
His first piece of advice? “Please view yourself as a start-up business,” mused Gydosh, who is managing director at Kensington Wealth Partners.
Gydosh explained that the new crop of students had so far been given financial support, emotional support and other aid from sources all around them. How they would use this support – as an investment or in some other way – would steer the course of their lives.
Failure, however, could be overcome – Gydosh shared as he shared his troubles with calculus while he was an undergraduate. Having failed calculus, he pushed for permission to take a more advanced class first – and succeeded.
“One thing I learned from that,” said Gydosh, who had his final exam framed, “is that I can learn anything if I put my mind to it.”
Gydosh also encouraged students to sign the Russ College honor code banner, which displayed the code’s statement: “We members of the Russ College pledge to act with integrity and expect the same from each other.”
Engineering Ambassador Jessica Borer said Gydosh’s advice for the fresh faces was sound. “He wanted to convey the idea to do what you want, don’t miss any opportunities,” she said.
Borer added with regret that as a freshman, she had skipped the dinner. “I wish I would have come. I learned more being here tonight than I did during my first year.”