Editor’s Note: Some of the most successful businesses begin with questions, not answers. Their leaders aren’t afraid to ask those questions and dive into action without knowing the full answers. Here, Megan shares a story of fearlessness and determination that signifies the mark of a true hustler.
I see the experience of life in a slightly more skewed way than my colleagues. While my educational career at the University has been no less than informative on world issues, composed of meeting amazing people and learning applicable skills for the “work place,” I’ve never seen myself living the American standard of a linear life: school, followed by marriage, children, work, and ultimately retirement.
After taking a semester off I decided to come back to school, transferring from Boise State University to the University of Idaho. My semester away from school helped me reflect on the importance of education in a scholastic setting. I partook in a slew of customer services jobs, from cleaning the BSU recreation center to working in a buffet in Boise. I moved forward in pursuing my degree at the University of Idaho in International Studies, with an emphasis in business and a minor in French.
My name is Megan. I am currently enrolled at the University of Idaho, senior status, and walking across the stage in May. I’m ready to move my tassel to the other side of my cap. For me, graduation symbolizes a visual expression of an internal decision to move my life in a new direction. I’m ready to take my vision, passion and beliefs on a journey over the pond. A flight over a large pond-an ocean, more specifically-that lands in Paris, France and continues with a train ride to Chambery.
I was recently accepted into INSEEC, a graduate business school in Chambery, France. Classes begin on June 16 and I will be in Europe until October 10, travelling and living out one of my many dreams of experiencing Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany. I don’t see immersing myself in a work environment after graduating in May; I have so much more I want to explore, learn, taste, feel and see before I become settled in the job field.
While in Boise, I interned at a local winery. I learned the skills needed to operate in the small business sector, the methodology of surviving in a competitive market, communication skills and the process of wine making, which was on site. Moving up to Moscow, ID for school, I got a job working at a local bar, The Garden Lounge.
I dove into learning about different liquors and liqueurs, beer, wine and the history that follows each process. It was a new world that blew me away; there was a new language to learn when referring to certain alcohol, the surrounding culture and the experience a bar played in a small, local community setting. I fell in love. Wine has always been my catch-all when it comes to alcohol- the tannins, color, taste, bottling and marketing behind the wine process.
I’m on a journey to pursue my vision of opening a local winery. The small business sector and the basic platform is the component that interests me and made me decide to get a business emphasis. I can’t wait to get to Europe to explore wine regions and varieties of grapes, but to also focus on how business is conducted on an international scale.
I can’t say what direction I will end up taking after this journey- maybe head to Australia and then to Bali and Thailand or back to the American Northwest. But right now I know what I want, and that is to experience people and places and everything that can fill my senses so I can have enough knowledge to go after my dream of opening my own business.
More often than not, when I tell people I am graduating in May, they ask, “Who do you want to be when you grow up?” My response usually warrants an expression in their faces I am used to seeing. I tell them I have no idea where I am going to be or whom I am planning on becoming and that it is perfect for where I am right now. I tell them my plans of creating a business that is sustainable and fosters a renewed relationship between people and drink and the environment.
A quote has been resonating with me lately that states, “It feels good to be lost in the right direction.” This scholarship is not necessarily just about money in my situation. For me it is a function so I may continue my journey to enhance my vision.