Thursday, June 10, 2010

Leaving a Legacy

I sit on a university scholarship committee which, among our interrogations--I mean interviews--of candidates, annually poses the question: "What was your greatest contribution to your high school, and what will be your legacy there?"

Not an easy question for any incoming college freshman, even one with a 4.0 GPA, a near perfect ACT score and an impressive resume'.

It's an even tougher query for the average high school graduate, particularly one whose high school legacy (theoretically speaking of course) was being named Best Party Giver.

Fortunately, the value of one's contributions in life are not based solely on their high school experience. We all have a lifetime to accrue personal achievements, to impact other people, to make our mark on the world--however tiny and intangible it might be.

Some may be recalled for success in their chosen career. Others may have selflessly volunteered in their community or for a particular worthy cause. Others simply may be remembered for perhaps the greatest and most socially underrated accomplishment of all: being loving and nurturing parents. Most of us won't go down in history for monumental achievements like inventing the internet or bringing peace to the Middle East.

Yet each of us will be remembered by someone, for something.

Legacies are shaped, not just through our changing the world, but by our benefiting a few lives.

It's never too late for each of us to make our mark.

So, what do you hope will be your legacy?


  1. I think the parenting thing will be my legacy. Raising 2 wonderful boys that hopefully will be positive contributors to society is a pretty good legacy!

    Joan B

  2. If most moms could find their legacy in the kids they raise as Joan B. does, what a better world we would have!

  3. Joan B: I think it's more than pretty good!

    Anon: Amen.