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Urge to create leads first-year student to Gabelli School

Undergraduate | Sep 07, 2016 |
Graham Stevenson, BS '20

Graham Stevenson, BS ’20

One of the most important experiences of Graham Stevenson’s formative years was his association with Destination Imagination.

This nonprofit runs nationwide competitions for students that connect the so-called STEM fields—science, technology, engineering, and math—with what might seem like unlikely partners: social innovation and the arts, especially the performing arts. A Destination Imagination project might include, for example, developing a driving-simulation experience and using it to educate more than 1,000 community members about the dangers of distracted driving.

Stevenson, BS ’20, was involved with Destination Imagination from sixth grade through high school in his hometown of Boulder, Colorado. He was a competitor first, taking sixth place in the global competition as a ninth-grader. He later worked for the organization in a leadership role at the state level in Colorado.

Destination Imagination’s focus on innovation helped Stevenson to consider studying business, and that decision led him to the Gabelli School.

Whether it’s entrepreneurship, finding a new product, or devising a new method of doing business, “I like the idea of creating something new,” he said.

Stevenson, now 19, also enjoyed running cross country in high school. By his own admission, he was “never very good” during his first three years on the team, but he decided to focus on making a difference as a senior.

“At the end-of-season banquet, I was awarded for being a leader on the team and for helping mentor the younger runners,” he said.

Coming to New York, Stevenson said, is a continuation of his efforts to get a solid business education and continue to craft his purpose in life.

“Part of the reason I chose Fordham is because it seemed like a place where I would get the most full, real college experience,” he said. “It seemed to align best with my values: service to community, and a focus on strong academics.”

“I like experiences more than anything else, and that’s part of the reason I chose New York,” Stevenson added. “I figured I’d get the best experiences here.”

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