An unwinding circle of care and commitment

April 14, 2015

It’s the Circle of Life
And it moves us all
Through despair and hope
Through faith and love
Till we find our place
On the path unwinding
In the Circle
The Circle of Life

So go the lyrics of the song by Elton John in the movie The Lion King. I was reminded of the song this past week as we held several events at Bauer College.

On Thursday, we hosted children from schools in the area who had created artwork around themes related to money and finance, surrounding the week-long financial literacy program which is part of Houston Money Week. We celebrated their creativity and talked to them about what it means to plan and budget, to come to college and to have a job, to buy a house, a car and to make sure they planned for retirement.  The best part – they were 7-12 year olds, and they promised to come back as Bauer students when they graduated from high school. Their circle has just begun.

Catherine Waldmann, a 1946 BBA graduate, and her daughter Virginia “Ginger” Hawthorne were two of our guests at the annual Gold & Silver Cougar Luncheon.

Catherine Waldmann, a 1946 BBA graduate, and her daughter Virginia “Ginger” Hawthorne were two of our guests at the annual Gold & Silver Cougar Luncheon.

On Friday, we hosted our annual Gold and Silver Cougar Luncheon attended by Bauer College alumni who graduated 25 and 50 years ago. At this event, we share our stories told through the experiences of our current students and listen to stories like that of Catherine Waldmann, who was part of the graduating BBA class of 1946. Catherine’s daughter Virginia “Ginger” Hawthorne attended as well. Willie Burns spoke of his experiences and let us know that we may have two more Burns boys at Bauer in our MBA and BBA programs. Ginger, Willie and Catherine have complete circles and come back to start a new circle of engagement.

Later that evening, we attended a dinner at the home of one of our scholarship donors – Rahul Mehta, who awards scholarships to our students every year. Rahul’s home is an amazing architectural delight and tastefully furnished. We met his sister Nisha, his brother Dharmesh and his wife, and Rahul’s mother. We all shared our stories. Rahul came to the U.S. as a student in computer science, took a course by happenstance with Dr. Scamell, and out of that arose a friendship that lasted beyond his class and degree and helped sow the seeds for a very successful career in business. The story has all the right ingredients – the genius and hard work of a student and the dedication and commitment of a caring faculty who wanted their student to succeed. And now with several businesses and a career that is successful beyond measure, the student as alum, gives back, reconnects, completes the circle and creates new circles of opportunity for other students.

In all cases – from the connections from the middle school children who talked about money and saving so they could perhaps attend Bauer College later, to the Gold and Silver Cougars who came back to reconnect, to Rahul Mehta who comes back to thank his mentor Dr. Richard Scamell – each has found their place in that unwinding circle of life.

On Saturday, we hosted newly admitted students who will start at Bauer College this fall.  We talked about what makes Bauer College special. What is it? It is the Circle of Life – it is the commitment our faculty and staff have to developing and growing students to find their place in that unwinding circle.  This is why when our students graduate, they never leave. They find their place; they stay inside the circle; they come back and engage; they reconnect and create new circles through their engagement and giving, their caring and commitment.

Wonder if Elton John was thinking of Bauer College when he sang:

It moves us all, the Circle of Life, the unwinding circle…