The Journey of the Beginning

Oliver Briggs

Getting to where I am today was no easy feat. I think it’s safe to say that we all went through many hardships and battles to get to where we are today. I will describe my journey on how I got to where I am today and became a UNCG student.

Starting when I was a child, I had a huge obsession with sports. We can all say that when we were younger, we wanted to be a sports star, movie-star, superhero and many more difficult yet achievable dreams. As I grew, I slowly realized that these jobs take an insane amount of dedication and, as an eight-year-old boy, I didn’t quite have my life planned out yet. I didn’t let this stop me, though.

I dedicated myself to playing soccer for 16 years of my life, which came to an end due to me not being motivated and not seizing the moment. Others around me wanted it more than I did, and because of this I played badly and gave up on that dream.

Another huge part of my childhood was going to an overnight camp in Arapahoe, North Carolina, called Camp Seagull. I went during the summer for 11 years, and it taught me lifelong skills that I needed to know in order to become a respectful and tolerant man. I made many friends from all over the country that I still talk with to this day, but I have also lost a close friend, which taught me many important things: one being to take advantage of the situation you’re in and cherish it because no one knows how long it’s going to last.

Starting around middle school is when I think your brain really begins to turn on, and you become a lot more aware and understand what’s happening around you. I went to a private Catholic middle school growing up called Immaculate Heart of Mary, or “IHM” for short. I made lots of lifelong friends there who have also helped me grow as a person and helped me get to where I am today. Without some of them, I wouldn’t have passed some tests or assignments. This taught me that having people in your life is a necessity and that being a lone warrior trying to solve everything by yourself just causes problems for everyone, especially yourself.

The person who helped me the most was my friend and roommate, whom I’ve known for just about 10 years. Academics started to actually become difficult during this time. My grades weren’t the best, but they worked: look where they put me. This is also the time where religion became really important. I went to church twice a week and of course had a religion class at school. I really liked religion when I was younger but as I got older, my relationship with it deteriorated. 

The last 4 years of my life were nothing special and were similar to everyone else. I went to class, had good grades, had fun, learned a lot, played sports and grew as a person. High school is where my soccer career ended, but it is also where my tennis career started. It was also a public school which is very different compared to my middle school. During the summer is when I really had a change, though. I wasn’t happy with myself, so I changed that. I threw away my old self and made something brand new. I got a positive mentality and overall became a better person.

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