What Do Spider-Man, Ne-Yo, the New Orleans Saints and International Women’s Day Have In Common?
My name is Corey Lee and I’m interning here as the International Women’s Day Event Coordinator from January to May. I am a senior at St. Edward’s University majoring in Communication and originally from the Greater New Orleans area, but I am planning on staying here in Austin once I graduate in May.
One of the things I am most known for amongst my friends is my obsession with everybody’s favorite web-slinging superhero, Spider-Man. I remember my dad waking me up early each Saturday morning to watch the cartoon and my grandpa bringing me to flea markets to see some Spider-Man comics and the joy it brought me. Looking back, I think being such a fan of this comical superhero helped me get out of my shell, while teaching me the famous adage, “With great power comes great responsibility.”
One of my favorite things to do to pass time is listen to music. Although I feel I listen to a large majority of mainstream music, my heart will always be with R&B. I remember the first time I listened to Usher’s 2004 album Confessions and how much I listen to that CD because of the emotion in it. My favorite artist, however, has to be Ne-Yo. Not only does his music bring me on a journey, but he also sets an example of being a good person, which is why I modeled myself after him once I learned more about his choices and career.
But to really get to know me, you have to understand one of my greatest passions in life: The New Orleans Saints. You might be wondering how a football team could be so special to someone. Well, we New Orleanians have never had a reason to celebrate. Of course, we party during Mardi Gras and other holidays; but there was never a reason to celebrate outside of tradition. Then Hurricane Katrina struck the city I held so deep in my heart. My family had to evacuate to Houston and a cloud of uncertainty hung around my future. Four months later, my family and I moved back, repaired our house, and I began going to high school in trailers. During the same time the Saints organization was rebuilding, starting with a quarterback named Drew Brees, who just had surgery to repair his torn shoulder. Despite all that, the Saints eventually won a championship — and made me feel like a winner for the first time in my life! I’m still a legend in my old dorm for yelling and screaming during the game and crying my eyes out in joy when they won Super Bowl 44. Even today, when I watch the recap of that season on DVD or read a chapter from Drew Brees’ memoirs, I tear up because it was so much more than a game.
It was liberation from tragedy.
During my internship here, I hope to learn the processes involved with making a large event such as International Women’s Day a success and also forge my personal skills to prepare me for my career once I graduate. I decided to join Ten Thousand Villages because of two reasons. The first was a recommendation from my friend, Baillee Perkins. She interned here last fall and explained how she really enjoyed her experience working here. The second reason is the passion and happiness I noticed in the staff and volunteers; they expressed clearly the importance of fair trade and Ten Thousand Villages‘ mission.
I look forward to meeting many new people, working on meaningful projects, and creating joyful memories during my stay here. I hope you enjoy this journey with me!
– Corey J. Lee