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Staff Spotlight: Thiago DeSouza

April 15, 2015

written by Thiago DeSouza

Freshman week begins and you’re bombarded with all that Liberty has to offer. There are people in Leadership shirts running around and helping people move in, but then you also have people in Student Activities shirts telling you all about the events they have going on during the course of the year. Rumor had it that those wearing the Student Activities shirts were the cool kids on campus…but what did I know? As time went on, I would continue running into the people wearing Student Activities shirts, promoting their events all over campus. The staff my freshman year carried themselves with some type of swagger. And whatever it was, I wanted some.

My name is Thiago, and I was born and raised in the beautiful city of San Francisco, California. If you have not been there, do yourself the favor. Let’s just say that coming to Lynchburg was initially very…different. Who would have thought that some kid from San Francisco would end up in Lynchburg, Virginia? Not me. I am currently a senior studying psychology, and I enjoy drumming, spending time with those I love, and doing hood rat things with my friends. Some dislikes would include waking up early, doing the dishes, and seeing couples sit on the same side of the booth at the Rot. Can I get an amen?!

Going back to that Student Activities swagger, I wanted some for myself. Fast forward to the summer going into my junior year: I contacted SA and told them I was returning to LU after being away for a year and that I was interested in joining the Event Staff. The opening was there and I was hired. This is currently my second year on Event Staff, and the job has not been what I fully envisioned it to be. I thought it was going to be a walk in the park as we worked some events on campus; instead, the territory has come with blood, sweat, and tears.

My comfort zone came under attack during my time with SA. I have had to work with people I did not previously know, people who to some degree had different interests, came from different cultures, and people who went about their business differently. I am not the most outgoing person in the world, and I have never enjoyed walking up to strangers and starting a conversation. There have been some bumps in the road that have led to times of growth and stretching (which can be hard at times) but I am a better person because of it. The other Event Staff have become family over the last couple of years. We spend countless hours together and there is something special about doing life with them. There is something special about working long hours with them and still wanting to be around them outside of work.

Graduation is rapidly approaching and that means a lot of change is to follow. There are a lot of questions that are yet to be answered. What I do know for sure is that I will be pursuing a master’s degree in professional counseling through Liberty. I will be living in Lynchburg for at least another 2-3 years.

Since I’ve been here for a few years now, I will say this: freshmen, get involved on campus in whatever capacity. Do not be afraid to ask for help when needed, learn how to manage your time, and choose your friends wisely. You do not need to find your significant other right away, and lastly, enjoy your college years because they will go by way too fast. Oh and attend every single SA event! To everyone else, enjoy whatever time you have left because it will all be over before you know it. My biggest regret is not taking advantage of everything Liberty has to offer. Despite all that, thank you Liberty University and Student Activities for these past four years. It was quite the journey. Whenever my time with SA comes to an end, I will look back and be proud to say I worked there.