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Bigger than Self
by ASHS President Curt Rom
When I go camping, which I love to do, I enjoy laying out and looking up at the stars. I did this recently as spring has sprung; it was warm and there was a chorus of tree frogs. Without the moon the sky was clear, dark and full of stars. I suppose most people have also done this at one time or another. I find it awe inspiring.
Probably when people look up at the stars and the vast cosmos they may have one of several thoughts. In some cases, people may feel overwhelmed by the complexity and size of the universe; they feel miniscule. In my case, I get this great sense that, out of that greatness and vastness, I am a part of it. In Joni Mitchell’s song, Woodstock, she said “we are stardust.” That always inspired me—that we are made of the same stuff as all of the galaxies, stars, asteroids, planets, and moons. I enjoy knowing that I was part of something that great and that big. That, in my little corner of the universe, I am still part of it.
I feel that same way about many organizations to which I belong, and it is a motivation for me to join. I enjoy and feel it is important to be part of a community and connected, to be a part of it.
Recently in my Career and Professional Development class, the students completed the TypeFocus personality assessment. This is a Myers-Briggs (M-B) type personality assessment primarily focused on career choices. It is interesting that the data on these types of M-B personality assessments indicate that academicians and scientists tend to have strong “introversion” tendencies.
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