The International Student House is an unflickering beacon of change. New residents cycle in twice a month and older residents shuffle out sporadically during each season as they continue to seek out professional success and personal satisfaction.
I recently began a new position as a Disability Integration Advisor for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). FEMA has an ideology about adaptability fittingly referred to as being FEMA Flexible. The concept is simple, be aware of your surroundings, adapt to changing circumstances and adopt the most effective and ethical methods of accomplishing a task.
My position requires me to deploy to emergency zones and disaster areas across the country in an effort to coordinate disability integration as it relates to programmatic access, physical access and effective communication.
As with any new endeavor, discouraging thoughts and droplets of self-doubt are attempting to seep into my psyche. Nevertheless, I’ve learned that freedom can often be found within the folds of flexibility. With this in mind, I am reassured of my ability to withstand whatever winds may blow my way. Being flexible merely means that I may need to bend in order to accomplish my goals without having to break away from my primary objectives completely.
As I prepare for my first deployment, I do so with a tad of trepidation and a tremendous amount of tenacity. I know that I am capable of conquering the challenges I will surely encounter. I am also curious and admittedly a bit nervous about the changes to come. I intend to embark on this new journey with several of my most trusted companions – creativity, charisma, courage, patience, persistence and faith. This crew has never failed me before and I am looking forward to using each of them to succeed in disaster situations and any future endeavors…or personal crises…or unexpected emergencies.