A Running Start

From the moment Timothy Reid ’24 set foot on campus, he knew that NC State was the place for him. He could sense the genuine spirit of community and observed the “perfect balance of driven determination and love of campus life.” Receiving the Park Scholarship “sealed the deal.”

“In choosing a college, what was most important to me was finding a community where I could truly see myself living, growing, and most importantly, thriving. NC State easily checked all of those boxes,” Reid explains. 

“The atmosphere at NC State is a catalyst for personal growth and success. ‘Think and Do’ isn’t just a set of words, it is a way of life. This environment inspires you to do better, work harder, and dream bigger.” 

Reid, a native of Cornelius, North Carolina, enrolled in NC State’s Poole College of Management with a major in business administration and a concentration in finance and plans to add a minor in political science. He kicked off his first year with a campaign for Student Government

“I saw my run for first-year senator as a way in which I’d be able to deepen my connection to my class and advocate for our success in a moment in which it seemed that all odds were proverbially ‘stacked against us.’ Being the first group of high school seniors to have to end their year remotely as well as the first group of freshmen to begin their college experience virtually, all in the middle of a pandemic, is something truly unique and unprecedented.”

When he started to consider a campaign for Student Government, Reid found an eager group of supporters within the Park community. From his Park mentor Dr. Kanton Reynolds, a former chief justice in NC State’s Student Government whose “face lit up” when Reid broached the idea, to Park alumna Madeline Finnegan ’18 who offered “incredible insight into how much she grew from her experiences” in Student Government and as president of the UNC Association of Student Governments, the UNC System student governing body, Reid received strong encouragement from alumni.

“My Park peers truly stepped up to bat for me in a way I really couldn’t have imagined,” Reid continues. Candidates are allowed to assemble a campaign team. Reid’s included Park Scholars Sami Atassi, Meredith Gaskill, Anna Hill, Katie Krawcheck, Jenni Mangala, Paige Seibert, Kiran Soma, Sam Wallace, and Bryan Wilson — all members of the Class of 2024.

Reid says their contributions were indispensable. “This phenomenal group of people worked so hard to help plan campaign events, strategize an efficient timeline, design graphics, spread my platform, and so much more. I truly couldn’t have gotten the job done without them.” 

“Every step of the way, the Park community was there, cheering, pushing, and encouraging me along.” 

Timothy Reid
Timothy Reid ’24 visited the Park Commons during Final Selection Activities in February 2020.

“Throughout my campaign, I wanted to draw upon the resilience of our class to make the most of our freshman year despite the present circumstances,” Reid explains.

In September, Reid won his election and took his seat in the Senate. Reid says he is honored to be part of the Student Government. “It is so clear to see how much these student leaders genuinely care for the needs of the student body and want to advocate for student success.”

“I’m excited to continue to carry out the promise I made to my class when I ran: to think up creative ways to bring all of us together and highlight the strengths of our class.”

He plans to sponsor legislation aimed at improving the overall well-being of the student experience. “One of the main concerns I constantly hear relates to students wanting to be heard in a time and space where it feels that we’re all so disconnected.”  

For Reid, Student Government is just the beginning. “I still have a lot more that I want to do, try, and get involved in once we return to campus, but I think I definitely got a good running start with this first semester.” 

He is looking forward to continuing to meet new people. “One of the things I love most about NC State is the genuine nature of everyone you come across. It seems that just about everyone is passionate about something, and they have no hesitations sharing those passions with you.”

Apart from running for Student Government, Reid met several personal and academic goals in his first semester and continued to grow closer with his Park class. He also has gotten involved with Service Raleigh and UNC Association of Student Governments. 

“Staying connected with all of the amazing people I met in August definitely helped” ease the transition to a remote semester, as did Reid’s family who he shares “did a great job at respecting the space I needed to focus on my schoolwork and be productive.”

Reid explains that his Park Scholarships class shares an “effortless bond” that has grown throughout the entirety of the pandemic. “It was present back in March when we all connected for the first time, it was present during Freshman Retreat and our time on campus, and it continues to be present now.” His classmates regularly check in on and support one another. 

He praised the entire Park faculty and staff for helping his class through an unprecedented first semester, and gives special appreciation for Class of 2024 Park Faculty Scholars Dr. Suzie Goodell and Dr. Russell Gorga. “They’ve dedicated countless hours to checking in with each of us individually, and simply reaching out to reach out. It’s so clear that they want to see each of us succeed and they’re committed to doing everything in their power to make that happen. Their support means the world.”

When reflecting on the trials and triumphs of fall 2020, Reid describes how he processed the challenges: “There is so much that we can’t control. I focused on the things that were within my control. At the end of the day, I am responsible for what I get out of my experiences.”

In the future, Reid may consider a career path combining his passions for business entrepreneurship and politics. One thing he is sure of is that he wants to be a mentor.

“I simply want to pay this forward in some way. I know I wouldn’t be standing here today without the generosity and selflessness of countless people in my life including my mom and my dad, relatives, teachers, mentors, and other positive role models.” 

“I’m only where I am today because someone recognized that potential in me and I want to recognize it in others. I want to have the same impact on someone else’s life that my role models have had on mine.”