All posts by Ervin Terwilliger

Excellence, like Rome, isn’t built in a day

Rome wasn’t built in a day. This phrase is heavily overused, but I love it. Many people envision becoming great and achieving excellence, but very few look into what it takes to reach excellence. My goal is to achieve excellence in hockey and make it to the NHL. I look to Rome as a prime example of achieving greatness, despite its creation story, riddled with dark events and hard times. 

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The legend tells that Rome was started by two brothers, Romulus and Remus. Left in the woods to die, a mother wolf found them, and raised them as her own. As the boys grew, their ambitions followed. They set out to build a city, a monstrous, seemingly impossible task, but one they believed was possible. They began to build the city, brick by brick, with no support, determined to reach their goal. While building the city, the two began to fight over which mountain to build the city upon. Romulus, coming to the realization that his brother Remus was sabotaging the building, Romulus killed Remus and named the city after himself… Rome. 

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Rome took thousands of years to reach its pinnacle, encompassing most of continental Europe, Britain, much of western Asia, northern Africa, and the Mediterranean islands. To become the towering empire it would blossom into, Romans looked to previous empires and civilizations for influence, most notably the Greeks, taking advantage of prior failures and successions to learn and improve upon. I use Rome’s creation story as an analogy for my goal to play in the NHL. While a daunting task, over time, I can develop into the professional player I see myself becoming. 

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The building of Rome can be an analogy for the hard decisions I have made to set myself up to reach my goal. From painful decisions of cutting off relationships with toxic friends, to not going to parties but instead practicing and devoting all free time to improving my game. While I am not at the pinnacle of my game, I’m a work in progress, constantly looking and searching for new ways to improve. Lou Holtz, a Notre Dame football legend, once said, “You don’t stay the same. You get better, or you get worse.” I take this mentality into every situation, striving to achieve my Rome. Working day by day… brick by brick refining my craft.

Ervie Terwilliger is a senior member of the Multimedia Journalism class.