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The Right Kind of Stress

5 Mar

fwrgrfrFor the last three and a half years, I have been asking myself if it is wise to be so involved in college.

So involved that it takes a toll on your health, schoolwork, and relationships. I find myself at the breaking point some weeks, but I still wake up at 8:00am, shuttle myself to school, and work until the job is done. Day after day, week after week.

Many of my friends have time to go home during the afternoon and do nothing for a few hours. The less time I have, the more appealing the idea of leisurely TV watching becomes.

Why can’t I just drop everything I’m involved in when I’m overwhelmed?

Why is it so hard for me to say, “No, I can’t take on that task?”

Why can’t I just ignore the world’s needs and do what I want to do – which is go watch TV on a Wednesday afternoon in my pajamas and eat some cheese and wheat thins.


Because I find deep satisfaction in what I do. There’s a sense of happiness in working for others, a sense of joy that comes from putting in hard work. I have resolved that no matter what, I’m still going to get up at 8:00am, shuttle my butt up to school, and get work done.

Bottom line, people make me happy.

I’m lucky to be stressed out. I’m lucky that I have people who trust me enough to do hard work and take on stressful tasks. I’m fortunate that I’m able to take on these tasks and maintain a good GPA with the love of great friends and amazing family who are supportive of my endeavors and so helpful during my cry-fests.

I feel like I just did a 360 turn. I’m stressed. I’m happy. I’m happy, because I’m stressed. Just call me a girl, I guess. Full of emotions!

Seriously though, I am fortunate to be involved. The happiness I have earned from being involved has made me a strong, independent woman who pushes herself to take on endeavors, be bold and try new things.


_C9A5957Vanessa Cortez is a Senior from Harlingen, Texas. She is obtaining Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Political Science. Vanessa has served in leadership roles in various organizations on campus including College Republicans, Student Organizations Council, and Student Foundation. As the current Student Body President for Texas State University, she is very passionate about serving the students and university. She hopes to bring a positive impact to campus during her administration and encourages students to utilize ASG as a resource to improve Texas State University.


Conjunction Junction

19 Feb

NCSU_MGIM_logo_v1aNorth Carolina State University’s Masters of Global Innovation Management (MGIM) program holds a special place in my heart. Absorbed in a swirl of color, space and copy, my self-portrait as a post-undergrad graphic designer was jauntily painted. But my love of design and creative messaging was dwarfed by a fascination with innovation. Rather than developing advertisements convincing others to purchase, I slowly realized that I wanted to help create the next generation of products and services for the end user to experience. For me, the MIGM program was a platform to break through into the world of innovation and accelerate my career by landing me with a Business Analyst position at Kalypso.

The MGIM program also provided lifelong friendships with a unique group of characters that believed in the power of creativity and innovation – this is one of the many junctions where the values of MGIM and Kalypso collide. For a firm like Kalypso, such a conjunction of values and talent in one place is hard to ignore. This is the motivation behind Kalypso’s MGIM Innovators Scholarship initiative and our desire to start conversations with soon-to-be graduates of the MGIM program.

I am excited to announce that this year, Kalypso is expanding our second annual MGIM Innovators Scholarship to include an additional two thousand dollar award. It is our hope to continue grow the support and partnership between what we believe is an outstanding graduate program and Kalypso—the worlds premiere innovation consulting firm.

The Kalypso MGIM Innovators Scholarship application can be found on the Stelos Alliance’s website here.

The deadline for submissions is March 1, 2014.


SeanKlein2012_viewpoint_jpg-120x150Sean Klein is a senior consultant at Kalypso. He holds a Master of Global Innovation Management degree from North Carolina State University and Université Paul Cézanne. Sean also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies from University of North Carolina at Wilmington. At Kalypso, Sean arms clients with the capability to consistently measure, manufacture and drive profitable ideas into the marketplace. He also has an extensive Lego collection.

The Journey Ahead

23 Jan


“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Confucius

…Maybe Aristotle

…Wait, it was definitely Drake, that’s certainly the guy!

Regardless of who whispered the words, people from all over the world have relied on them for inspiration when stuck against a wall, making a decision or taking on a seemingly insurmountable challenge. I mean it’s simple, yet so very strong and profound!

But the use of this quote frustrates me when it is used without a true understanding the weight of its words. “Whoo! Journey! Thousand Miles! Single Step! I got this!” Yes, it’s motivational and inspiring, but we often sell it short. We tweet it and share it, but sometimes fail to consider what the words means below the surface.

In my opinion, the quote implicitly says: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step….and must be taken a step at a time.” The original quote is profound, but it’s only the beginning of the story. The real magic is found by reading between the lines and seeing that the journey requires many steps. Yes, the first step is important, but it’s only a piece of the picture. It’s the first in a long series of steps each being as important as the last.

Do you know how far a thousand miles is in a literal sense? It’s hard for me to wrap my head around. I do know how far a mile is, and I don’t even enjoy walking that. So, a thousand miles? That seems pretty intense. The thought of placing my foot tirelessly in front of the other over and over to walk a thousand miles doesn’t seem pleasant.

But, I know I could take a single step – not a problem.

While you should definitely begin with the end in mind and think about your end goal, that shouldn’t be the sole focus. When we look only to the end of the journey, it’s easy to become discouraged by how far there is left to go. That’s why we break the journey of a thousand miles into small achievable goals. Single steps. That’s where the magic is! See how this came full circle?

When you break a journey of a thousand miles into single steps, the decision is no longer one of taking a thousand mile journey – rather, it’s a lot of decisions to take many one-step journeys.

The message is not: start and you will finish.

The message is: start-finish, start-finish, start-finish.

And if you do that enough times, eventually you will succeed.


Jacob Lira is currently a full-time svsdvsdvtudent at Texas State University pursuing an undergraduate degree in Business Management with a concentration in Entrepreneurial Studies. Committed to developing as a peak performer and servant leader, Jacob is always proactively engaged in opportunities to sharpen his wide skill set and abilities. Currently this is best exemplified in his endeavor to build a new business and startup of his own.

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