To transform lives for the betterment of society. One student, one discovery at a time.
-Roy M. Spence, Jr.
There has been a lot of focus on the value of purpose. In the latest bestseller, It’s Not What You Sell, It’s What You Stand For, Roy M. Spence, Jr. chronicles various organizations he has worked with all for the same aim, to identify their real purpose for existing. I was particularly taken with a university he worked with and wanted to share part of their story. Spence was involved with a group of colleges and universities whose aim was to tackle the question: How can we increase public support for higher education? How possible would it be for thousands of schools to develop a unifying purpose. One key was to stop focusing on their differences and instead to start focusing on the difference that they make. Our colleges and universities teach students how to learn and think critically, and at TregoED our mission is to do the same for middle school and high school educators and students – to make and implement great decisions.
One particular university story really touched me and I’d like to share part of it with you. Dr. Robert Gates, former president at Texas A&M (as well as former Secretary of Defense) worked with Spence on the true purpose of Texas A&M. If higher education is in the business of being a source of solutions for the future, what would Texas A&M’s solution – or purpose – be? After numerous interviews and meetings, the following anthem was written and is in every dormitory and building on campus.
Welcome to Aggieland
There is a place where tradition is a way of life, character is stitched into the local fabric and leaders are a natural resource. It’s a place where the future is knocking at the door, but the past always has a place at the table.
Here everyone’s glass is half full, and cynicism is on a permanent leave of absence. It’s where fish learn to swim, elephants never forget, and a horse could carry someone all the way to a Nobel Prize.
Every man or woman can make a difference here – especially the twelfth one. And you’re as likely to get a statue for a selfless act as you are a heroic one. The greater good is a required course and a helping hand is a required gesture.
This is Aggieland, where optimism is an alternative energy source and acts of integrity are on everyone’s to-do list. History is made every day and remembered every year. It’s a place where pushing ideas forward doesn’t mean pushing values aside.
Welcome to Aggieland. Enjoy your stay.
So what is your purpose? Your school’s? Your district? Share your purpose. Be proud of your purpose. And, most of all live it!