From Aspiration to Actuality
A chronicle of How An Ambitious Concept and its Rigorous Evolution Gave Rise to the LaGuardia Honors Network by Emanuelle Williams
It was a balmy Wednesday in July at the Honors House and the mood was promising. The mission for the afternoon was to develop a way in which the Honors Student Advisory Committee (HSAC) could effectively and efficiently reach the students of LaGuardia Community College. Ironically the process itself of finding the right mode was anything but straightforward, and would stretch across many Wednesdays and other summer days in the weeks to come.
Deep into brainstorming, HSAC, not quite 1-year old at that time, had to unearth a way that would communicate clearly the Committees purpose, while at the same time aiding fellow scholars. Several ideas were presented as potential methods of communicating to the masses and the process went through its fair share of twists and turns before the glorious end product was achieved. Though there was an incredible Honors Program website already in operation, as well as a facebook page in full swing, the members of HSAC--past and present--felt it was time for a dramatic revamping of the Honors image and message.
The initial idea was to create a simple blog, and at first this platform, with its inviting aesthetics coupled with the simple stream of thought format, seemed to be a suitable presentation of HSAC information and updates. Although the blog structure is quite accommodating and socially current, our discussions led us to see that it is also unexpectedly restricting and does not allow for the easy organization of important information. This unexpected realization was not disheartening but it instead motivated the team. As the scheduled deadline crept closer, the HSAC members' minds fluttered with new ideas and notions that far surpassed the early model.
Thus the Network was born: a website, not a blog, would serve as the platform on which the Committee could easily reach its peers with pertinent and useful information that every student should have. Once the proverbial ball was rolling on the development of the site, the realization of creative freedom emerged and a conversation about how HSAC was to be perceived through the website commenced. Serious look? No. How about laidback? Red and green theme? No, that looks like a Christmas tree exploded! Black and white is classic, sophisticated, and understated..., but also boring! How about an image of a coffee stain and ramen noodles? And so it went. As the content was gradually being added, this became the typical tone of the new Honors House in M-222" sprightly group interaction and a teamwork rivaled by no other. Of course there were days of immense nervous energy (glances at Dr. Koh), butting heads, and justifiable exhaustion; HSAC made it through the summer months battle-scarred, but nonetheless smiling, and bonds of friendship were cemented.
So at the end of the day, this is what it means to be an Honors Student. You may work two jobs, have a household to maintain, or family to watch over; you might be tired everyday all day. Yet the satisfaction and extraordinary feeling of accomplishment that come with getting the job done and done well--implementing a project that will help others, or earning grades that you fill you with pride--is worth every minute of it. With the Honors Network, HSAC wants to be your partners in precisely such a journey of accomplishment and pride while you are at LaGuardia Community College and beyond.