Tapping into your network is a valuable tool for any working professional and Rakin Hasan is the perfect example of how rewarding networking can be. A Golden Key Alumni, former President of the Macquarie University chapter, and currently a Senior Analyst in the Technology & […]
Tag: honor society
Aloha. My full name is Gabriele Angelo Ciminelli and it has given people enormous trouble over the years! Though it might be a name that sounds like it is from the renaissance era, I can assure you I do love my name. To make things happier […]
It’s not uncommon for students to take a study abroad year. It’s just that I was 37 when I took mine. I completed my first bachelor’s degree in 2001, joining Golden Key at that time, and then completed a second bachelor’s degree part-time by distance in 2008. Postgraduate study was always on my mind, and one day I saw a course at the University of Glasgow that looked to be exactly what I wanted to do. I applied, was accepted on scholarship, and suddenly I was moving to Scotland!
Moving abroad is difficult at any age, perhaps more so when you are older and more settled in life. Finding accommodation and making friends were also more difficult as an older student. I felt too old for student accommodation and all the university clubs and societies were full of much younger students, so I had to search outside of the university for friends.
But there are also definite advantages to waiting until you are older to study abroad. For example, I’d learned the value of networking, taking advantage of all learning opportunities, and also project management, which I was very thankful for when I came to write my dissertation. I also think I was much more grateful to be there, having waited for so long, versus my younger classmates who perhaps took the opportunity a bit more for granted. This made me value the whole of the experience more, rather than just going to class, submitting the assignments, and getting the degree.
Throwing myself into a new situation at age 37 was also a great personal challenge. You can become a little set in your ways as you get older. I’d lived in the same city my whole life, had worked for the same company for ten years, lived in the same apartment for seven years, and most of my friends I had known since at least my twenties. To have all of that taken away and have to navigate a new city, get out and meet new people, and be stretched intellectually was a big step outside of my comfort zone.
There were times it was difficult, times that I doubted myself or was lonely, and many times that I suffered from imposter syndrome. But as they say, the best learning happens outside of your comfort zone, and overall I feel that the experience made me a lot more confident and resilient. I also really enjoyed re-engaging with academia and the experience opened my eyes to different paths and career options. It was a very fulfilling experience and I’d say to others who have the same dream that you are never too old.
Bio: Claire Baxter
Claire became a member of Golden Key since 1999 during her Bachelor of Sports Management. She then completed a Bachelor of Arts in History and Archaeology, and has been working in the travel industry for the past 13 years as both a product manager and business analyst. During this time she took a sabbatical to study a Masters of Conflict Archaeology at the University of Glasgow.
Back in 1977, a group of students had a vision for a new kind of campus organization – an honor society that would empower high–achieving students to become future world leaders.
On our 40th Anniversary, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal gave us the gift of commending our members and recognizing the Society.
Thank you to our entire GK family for your hard work and dedication to Golden Key.
Click here to see the scanned Proclamation!
Here’s to the next 40 years!
Adnan Bokhari has been Chairman of Golden Key’s Board of Directors since August 2016. Read about his inspiring story and what drew him to Golden Key.
Avery Hlavinka joined Golden Key during her sophomore year at Texas A&M University-Kingsville. She is now a senior, and has just been accepted into the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy.
Everyone at Golden Key is thrilled about Avery and her future. Let’s hear more from Avery about her life and her plans.
Golden Key: Where did you grow up, and what you are up to now?
Avery Hlavinka: I grew up in the small town of East Bernard, Texas. I have always had an interest in the healthcare field and worked as a student athletic trainer throughout high school.
I am currently a senior at Texas A&M University-Kingsville, and I will be graduating in May. I have especially enjoyed science and English classes. That led to my college major, Biomedical Sciences, and my minors, English and Chemistry. Next fall, I will begin studies at the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy.
Golden Key: Outside the classroom, what have been your favorite activities at Texas A&M-Kingsville?
Avery Hlavinka: I am a leader in multiple student organizations and participate in undergraduate research. During the summers, I work at a rice dryer near my hometown.
I became a member of Golden Key during my sophomore year. Honestly, when I initially received my invitation to join Golden Key, I joined because it would look good on my resume. However, since I joined, the society has become so much more than a bullet point.
I began serving as Vice-President of the TAMU-K chapter of Golden Key during my junior year. This is a position that I am maintaining now that I am in my senior year.
In the short time that I have been a member of Golden Key, the society has already paid back every cent of my membership fee and the benefits that I have experienced as a member far outweigh every ounce of time and energy that I have poured into the organization. I have attended professional development events, career-building workshops, and leadership conferences, to name a few. These opportunities for personal and professional growth are in addition to scholarships and monetary awards that I have received as a Golden Key member.
Some of the greatest benefits of Golden Key are the networking opportunities. Not only can you join a close-knit group on your own campus, but there are many events where you are able to make connections with people from other schools from around the country and the world.
Golden Key: Would you encourage other students to join? What do you believe they can gain from membership?
Avery Hlavinka: I encourage every student who receives an invitation to accept the offer of membership. The opportunities that Golden Key presents don’t stop after your New Member Recognition Event. Through your membership, you will experience countless opportunities to receive scholarships, invitations to attend career-building workshops, chances to participate in professional development and networking events, the ability to participate in volunteer service events and projects to give back to your community and much, much more.
Golden Key is one of the few organizations that continue with you throughout your life. I know that no matter where life takes me – pharmacy school, job opportunities in other cities or even in other countries – I will still be able to participate in Golden Key events and will have a Golden Key community almost anywhere I end up.
I grew up in a small town and community has always been an important part of my life. Golden Key will allow me to maintain that feeling of community and inclusion anywhere I go.
Do you have an outstanding Golden Key member that the world should know about? Nominate them to be featured in a member profile!
At Golden Key, we invite the top-performing 15% of sophomores through graduate students at universities to join the Society. Have you heard about our honorary members? We, as well as our chapter members, enjoy electing notable and impactful leaders on campus and in the community […]