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Featured Senior Series: Yancy Brown

When Yancy Brown came to Suffolk four years ago he did not have a single friend in school. Now, with his graduation looming, the accounting major is having a hard time distributing the few tickets he has for his graduation.

“Five tickets. That’s why I don’t know who’s coming,” says Brown. It’s the reason he even hasn’t told his parents the date of graduation yet – not until he is absolutely sure who he is inviting.


Clearly, the issue of friendlessness has solved itself during those “four long years.” Brown admits it didn’t take him long at all to make friends. He recalls that there were a lot more people like him; people who had no idea who the person next to him or her was, and it all turned out fine. According to Brown, this is what distinguishes Suffolk.

“Everyone was friendly,” he remembers about the orientation. “They didn’t hesitate to say ‘hi’.”

Soon after his first days, Brown realized there was a significant difference from high school. Where on earth did all that extra time come from?!

The gaps of time between classes were, according to Brown, the “biggest adjustment.” Freshmen-Brown would often spend these hours in the library. That’s where he made a few good friends. They would go there together to study, but most of the time ended up talking.

Other friends he met in organizations. “Definitely join organizations,” Brown advises. He names the Student Government Association, the Finance Committee and Best Buddies as a few recommendations.

Actually, join “as many as possible,” he added. Try to find organizations that “suit your culture and are close to your heart.” This is the first valuable lesson Brown discloses.

For a while, Brown was the president of NABA, the National Association of Black Accountants. Due to laws and regulation conflicts, that organization is no longer around at Suffolk. The organization could either be collegiate, or national, but not both. Brown and his group chose to join the national association.

“It makes you a different candidate,” Brown said about NABA. He talks about the time when he was at a job interview and the interviewer’s sister was in the NABA as well. “It’s a great conversation starter,” Brown said smiling.

Although the accounting major says he “always had doubts and second thoughts” about his major, he never switched. It’s about the mentality. “There are good times and bad times,” Brown gives as an explanation.

IMG_3811“Figure out what you want.” Don’t always change your mind. “If you change your mind, make sure you stick to it.” He says as his second piece of first-class advice.

These valuable lessons come close to the advice he would give his freshman-self: “Stay true to yourself.” Life lesson number three.

“I thought I was gonna be the same person,” Brown explained. “That 18-year old kid, jumping around, making jokes…” But evidently, four long years brought a lot of experience and some great life-lessons.

However, there are no solid plans for his future yet, Brown says. He broke his plans down into small steps, and advises everyone to do the same. “It [does] not always come out as planned,” Brown stated. “I realized that early.”

As for now? A full-time job, go to graduate school and eventually he would love to get his CPA, the license to be a certified public accountant.

The job-thing is not really what is bothering him right now. Within a week of reaching out, Fidelity and Beacon Hill Staffing Group were interested. Brown, however, is not eager to make the full decision. “It’s a mixture of: I’m scared, it’s coming too fast, I don’t wanna leave, but I have to leave.”

Does he have some sort of idea what he wants to do after graduating? “Disneyland,” he says resolutely. “I definitely wanna go to Disneyland. I’ve never been there!” Also, maybe a cruise to St. Thomas or St. Lucia; he heard it was fun there, and, of course, no tuition payments anymore!

That brings us again to graduation day. The plans are there: Graduating at 9:30 in the morning, followed by a graduation lunch with friends. After that, he would love to go to the graduation of his friends in the College of Arts & Sciences. Then, enjoy a sweet dinner party with his family in a “5-star elegant restaurant” to make the fun complete.

Brown sure realizes it’s “kind of big.” That’s also why he is not putting on his gown until the very last moment, the moment he officially gets his diploma. “To make it count,” he says. No, “it’s not an everyday-thing.”

That leaves that one question. The one we started with.  Who to invite?

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