29 years ago today, the bright eyed and bushy tailed person you see in the picture, who had graduated from her bachelor degree just one week prior, set foot in the lobby of 120 Park Avenue, NY, NY.

Little did I know that I was setting off on the adventure of a lifetime. An adventure that took me to travels to 80+ countries and homes on three. An adventure where I made enduring friendships, formed over countless learning experiences from late nights in the office getting ready for the “nth” long range plan presentation; writing the business weekly highlights; through commiserating; and, finding the learning in the things that didn’t go as planned and the exhilaration where they did.

As I think back over the last almost three decades, the words of the immortal Frank Sinatra come to mind “regrets I’ve had a few, but then again, too few too mention”. You see, I have arrived at the conclusion that every experience, good, bad, ugly, was all in preparation for the work I am blessed to do today – guiding a group of talented, dedicated Skagit Valley College BAS-AM participants on their own adventures and learning experiences. I realize how fortunate I am that even on days where the higher ed bureaucracy seems endless and the mountains of grading appear insurmountable (I’m two weeks behind, with two weeks in the quarter to go!), I’m living my iki-gai, the life stage that Japanese culture describes as the intersection between passion, mission, profession and vocation.

And, I realize that this wouldn’t be possible without the friendship, mentorship and faith from an immeasurable number of people but most especially my parents, my sister, and the BAS-AM Class of 2018-20, who laid a bet that the bumpiness of being inaugural class would pay off. Thank you for your trust in me. I won’t let you down.

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