Dr. Hrabowski offers enthralling oration


Dr. Hrabowski addresses the student body at an assembly. Dr. Hrabowski spoke of UMBC, the STEM Program, and following dreams.

Shannon Olsen, Lifestyles

President of UMBC Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement and the Children’s March, spoke on Sept. 18 to talk about his life and his accomplishments which got him where he is today.

In past years, many speakers have come to speak at JC, but none were quite like Hrabowski. The school should bring in more speakers like Hrabowski. The speaker that spoke about the summer reading book in 2011, “Into Thin Air”, was experienced in what he was talking about, but he did not capture the students’ attention quite like Hrabowski did. Speakers like Hrabowski are great role models and should be brought in more often to speak to the students.

Hrabowski talked mainly about the math and science programs at UMBC, and this topic was aimed more toward the students that are a part of the new STEM program. But his humor and inspiration kept people interested and made his speech funny and nice to listen to.

Hrabowski stressed the importance of good leadership qualities and taking the initiative when he talked about how to succeed. He told students that “beliefs become thoughts, thoughts become words, words become actions, actions become habits, habits become values, and values become destiny.” Hrabowski’s words stayed fresh in the students’ minds all day after he made them repeat his mantra several times with him.

Going into the assembly, I thought I was going to be listening to another boring speaker, but Hrabowski’s brilliant and personable remarks captured my attention.  One of Hrabowski’s most successful exercises was presenting a math problem that he left unanswered. By leaving the math problem unanswered, Hrabowski was able to keep everyone’s attention throughout the speech.

Hrabowski’s passion for math brought out a side of him that was so interesting, and these are the types of speakers that will keep students interested. He spoke with such passion that you could not help but want to listen to his story. Hearing passion during his speech inspires others to power through their own hardships.

Seeing other speakers that are as passionate as Hrabowski will show students why dreams are so important. Hrabowski left students with a thirst for knowledge and a renewed spirit of learning.


Shannon Olsen is a Lifestyles Editor for the Patriot and jcpatriot.com.