WASHINGTON – Colin Joseph, a 2022 graduate of the College of Arts and Sciences (COAS), is the recipient of Howard University’s annual Reginald F. Lewis Prize. First introduced in 1990, the Reginald F. Lewis Prize is awarded annually to one student graduating during the current academic school year. During Joseph’s completion of his undergraduate studies within the Department of Political Science, he increased his GPA from 1.76 to 2.96. As this year’s award recipient, Joseph receives $5,000 from the University.During his matriculation through Howard University, Joseph says, the interruption of COVID-19 and realization that an uncertain future lie ahead, was a catalyst to recommitting himself to his studies. Joseph sat down with the Office of University Communications to share his journey.
Take me through your journey through Howard, through COAS and the Department of Political Science.
I’ve always been in COAS, but I started originally as a bio major; I eventually switched it to my minor. But I think, coming into Howard, I really struggled with balancing my social life and my academic life, especially my freshman year. Freshman year, I actually lost one of my scholarships that allowed me to come to Howard, and that was a big wake-up call for me because I realized I might not return in the future, and so that’s when I adjusted. COVID-19 also kind of assisted. I think once we got to that virtual platform, and I was removed a little bit from the social life, I could really pay attention to my academics like I was back in high school.
How does it feel to be the recipient of the 2022 Reginald F. Lewis Prize?
I’m truly honored, I’m very thankful to receive this award. Although I may not have started off the way I wanted to, I’m definitely finishing the way I want to, and that’s pushing me forward. As I continue into my career, this money will definitely go towards good use and show me that the hard work truly does pay off.
Now that you’ve graduated Howard, what does the future look like for you?
I recently accepted a remote job with Intuit. I’m very fortunate to be going into sales for them and moving down to Miami, Florida. In the future, I hope to use my political science degree to eventually go to law school.
How has Howard prepared you for success in your life and career?
Howard definitely showed me that literally nothing is impossible. When I got my GPA freshman year, I really thought I was going to flunk out. People have high expectations for me, and I have high expectations for myself, so I really thought I was going to be a failure, but I realized that as long as I can set my mind to something, and I’m able to pursue it and put my all into it, I can do it. I also learned a lot of time management skills and to make time management a priority.
About Howard University
Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 14 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced one Schwarzman Scholar, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu.
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