This I Believe

Ashley - Syracuse, New York
Entered on September 10, 2007

Today’s world is filled with so many images of get rich quick schemes and the lifestyles of the superrich, that it becomes so easy to forget some of the most important values of our country. Hard work is one thing that everyone can do, no matter what a person’s situation is. Our country was founded on the value of hard work, especially with the belief that hard work can allow a person to achieve anything that they want in life.

I personally believe in hard work because it is what has allowed me to be where I am today. Ever since I started playing tennis at age 7, I have continuously worked hard to achieve my dream of one day turning professional. Although I’m not there yet, I have been able to cash in on my hard work. I am currently playing tennis on scholarship at Syracuse University, which is an amazing privilege. As a team, we work hard every single day by practicing, doing conditioning, and working on our mental game in order to reach a goal of NCAA champions. Without hard work and dedication, we would never even come close to realizing that dream.

I have always looked to my family for the perfect example of what hard work can do for you. My parents had me while they were still in high school, which made it a lot more challenging to achieve their respective dreams of graduating high, something no one in either family had ever done. Obviously, having a child made this even more difficult. However, my parents were determined enough and worked hard enough to make their dream possible. I spent my first 5 years at a college campus, and while I was at daycare, my parents went to classes. And at night, while one would be studying, the other would go to work. Being at the same age that my parents were at the time, I realize now how much hard work it took for them to simply graduate college.

Both of my parents instilled the same hard working ethics into me that they had been so successful at. Playing tennis taught me that hard work could get you anywhere you want it to, especially when looking at the professionals who play today. Hard work is what our country was founded on and is definitely a major role in the American dream. I just hope that in a world filled with materialistic thinking, this fundamental is never lost.