Sept. 11, 2013
Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes...change is hard. Baby to kid, kid to teen, teen to adult. Those are just the major ones. In reality, we’re evolving every day in small and big ways. We all have changes in our personal and professional lives—some good, some bad—but it is never easy.
As a Spartan, I’ve had my fair share of change. I went from traditional undergraduate to a married, non-traditional student. I went from student to alumna and alumna to employee.
As an employee, I am always changing. I consider myself lucky. My days at work are never the same and I’m never required to do the exact same thing. I learn something new every day and I love it. During the past 14 years in my department, I’ve evolved from the newbie in the office to a seasoned professional. (Let’s not talk about how I’m old enough to be the mother of our newest employees).
I’ve also moved a heck of a lot physically. I’m the proud holder of the office record for working in the most offices in the department. I’ve had views of the Administration Building, the stadium, a brick wall and no window at all. I’ve been on two different floors. Sometimes those moves came with new job descriptions—and sometimes not. I didn’t move around because no one wanted me (at least I don’t think so) but because things evolve. Priorities shift, challenges arise and people need to adapt.
I consider myself pretty flexible and able to go with the flow as the need arises. I’ve done pretty much anything asked of me and I like to consider myself the utility player in the office. And even with my personality that welcomes it, change is never easy.
Sometimes change makes a small impact in my life and sometimes it’s profound. Some of you know I was fortunate enough to travel the world with the Spartans Will.360 crew this past year. The things I saw and the experiences I had changed me forever. You just don’t spend time in a children’s ward in Zambia, an ER in Mexico, a drought-ridden village in Tanzania and the slums of Bangladesh and come back the exact same person you were when you left.
MSU sophomore Gissel Brito considers her experience on a study abroad experience in Mexico transformational. Read her Student View to learn about her trip and how it motivated her.
Richard Lenski is an expert on change. He is an MSU Hannah Distinguished Professor of microbial ecology and an expert in the ecological processes and genetic mechanisms that cause evolutionary change. Check out his Faculty Voice to learn more about the man behind the science and how he got into the field.
Professor Lenski is just one of countless MSU researchers who look at change and the opportunities it presents. Spartans all over the world are changing the world in significant ways—finding cures, feeding people, solving problems, teaching children and making an impact. Change might be hard, but it can be pretty darn great.
Photo of butterfly in the MSU Horticulture Gardens by Derrick L. Turner