Day 140: Dorothy, Assistant to the College Office

[ By on May 13, 2013 ]

The first thought that comes to my mind when I am asked about my job is, “Don’t stress.” Everybody who comes through here, especially the students, is stressed. The moment that they step in here, they think about how stressful the process is and wonder what the outcome will be. I guess the one thing I want to say is, at the end of the process they will be settled in a place where they ought to be, so what matters is to take advantage of that moment as a beginning, not an ending. The real question is: what will you make of your life? It’s a lot more than this process. The point is to make the best of the decision about where you are going so that you can make the best of the rest of your life.

The moment people walk in the door it is evident how stressed they are. Some of them don’t want to be here at all, so I try to make it as pleasant as possible for them. Knowing that there is someone here who cares about them and says it is going to be OK is important. I try to communicate to them this message: you’ll make it through this process. I have two sons in college who went through the process, and it’s amazing to see them and see how much they have grown.

I always like to greet students with a smile, and I like to stay calm even if things don’t seem to be calm so students can leave with a sense of peace. I do all this paperwork, but really when it comes down to it, it’s personal relationships and how we talk to each other that matters. It’s important that we touch each other’s lives in such a way that we can comfort one another—whether we’re in here, or out there, wherever we are.

Dorothy lives in the Bronx with her husband and, for right now, all three sons since two of them are home for the summer from college. In her spare time she cherishes spending time with her family and is always mindful of remembering to enjoy the moment.

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