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Month of the Military Child: In Their Own Words (Part III)

This blog post is the final of a larger series for the Month of the Military Child. Today we’re featuring a post written by Meisha Harris, a student at Baylor University.

My dad joined the Marines when he was 18, serving two tours in Vietnam as a Staff Sergeant. As a young Marine he learned the values of honesty, self-discipline, and—most of all—work ethic. My dad holds work ethic in high regard and uses it to guide his life. Growing up as a military child instilled these same values in me and just like my dad, I’ve used them to guide me through life.

There’s a different standard that’s expected when you’re a military child. There’s a degree of respectfulness and resourcefulness, above what other families might have. For simple things like cleaning your room or finishing your homework, there’s a basic order that you learn and that you keep throughout life. It’s a larger philosophy in the military community that you have to be self-motivated and resourceful. My experiences growing up have taught me to push myself and recognize that my dreams are limitless.

As an interior design major, I’m planning on using my creativity professionally by pursuing a career as a drafter in the field of interior design or architecture. I’ve faced the usual challenges in college—the intensity of the schoolwork, balancing a busy schedule. But I’ve been able to set my priorities and enjoy the experience. The values I’ve inherited have enabled me to find the light when things are overwhelming and stressful.

The support of the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation allowed me to go to my first choice school. It helped with my move from California to Texas and eased the strain put on by my other expenses. The continued support that the military community has demonstrated through organizations like the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation has been incredible.

Growing up in the military community has given me an incredible support system and set of values that will serve me for the rest of my life. But there are small ways that we can all give back to this community that has given so much. Something my dad taught me was to thank men and women in uniform when you see them. It’s a seemingly simple act but he’s adamant about it. They need to hear that, he explains, to know that what they’re doing is affecting other people’s lives.