My journey began when committing to Purdue in April. Once I joined the Business Opportunity Program (BOP) in May of 2021, I was excited to attend. I learned about BOP and all the opportunities that came with it from the wonderful program coordinators. I could tell they truly wanted to help every member succeed.
Thinking about coming to campus early in order to meet people who have similar interests and backgrounds gave me comfort. It was nice to be welcomed with open arms to my new home for the next four years.
I connected with other BOP members instantly and I consider the members to be my closest friends to this day. When we started to get to know each other, we did a lot of things together. We lived together in the summer and held many study sessions.
Through it all, we learned how to effectively collaborate and help one another navigate our new life at Purdue. Having a community within the business school makes me feel more a part of the student body. There are times I feel isolated being the only person of color within a class, but BOP has given me a community to help me feel understood and seen at this university.
What I am most thankful for are some of the classes we got to take before fall semester. One that really stuck with me was a professional development class that helped me to transition quickly from high school to college. I thought it was really helpful and gave me insight on how to navigate my professional growth. Having my peers alongside me in this class helped to grow our bond with each other over time. In addition, in classes we have discussed how to navigate the business world as a minority, which is one of BOP’s main goals.
I’m so glad I took the opportunities that were offered to me through this program. I met my best friend and some of the closest people in my life. Deciding not to hold myself back from trying new things opened so many doors for me. Joining BOP has allowed me to make some of the best memories of my life.