Welcome to Comrades Of Courage (COC)! My name is Paul McGowan and I am excited about being elected as your new COC president for the 2007 year.
This is my small section of the new COC Website where I can just talk to you about my visions for COC, its members, and the direction we want to take the University of South Alabama towards.
First, here is a little biographical data on myself. I am in my senior year here at South Alabama and will be graduating in the winter of 2007. My major is English Literature with a minor in History. My interests are diverse and far ranging and include: being a great dad, music, reading, writing, swimming, biking (in my case triking), astronomy, and so many more it would be a total bore to read. I have a decent GPA but somehow made it into four honor organizations including the Golden Key International.
Almost four years ago Staci Balsan and I were approached about starting a student organization at South Alabama to support students with disabilities. With some encouragement from administration we created the Comrades Of Courage. Today COC is a thriving organization and we hope the group will continue on long after we have graduated and moved in new directions.
My vision for Comrades Of Courage is one of mutual support. We want to support all students at South and in return they will support the organization. Contrary to some misconceptions, this organization is not just for people with disabilities, it is a place where all students, staff, and administration can come and enjoy camaraderie and support. I see physical barriers dissolving and attitudes towards people with disabilities improving as even South Alabama finally realizes this is the 21st century and begins to adopt a new mind-set. We will be a willing guide and able partner for USA during this rocky transition. Make no mistake, I have no delusions in this vision; I realize South has a long way to go to be compliant, but the hardest part was the start towards change. This start has been a positive one and with your support we can keep the ball rolling.
I want to warmly welcome each new member with a handshake and in that short introduction hopefully I will impart to them a feeling of real excitement about the changes we are making on the campus—the changes they too can be a part of when they become a Link in the Chain Of Change.
I want COC to be a place of shared hopefulness for a future without boundaries or barriers. This future is beginning to unfold here on the campus of South Alabama and in no small part because of this organization.
We are an open and transparent organization where all thoughts and ideas are appreciated. It does not matter what your race, sex, religion, orientation, or disabled status night be, you will always be welcome at the COC doors.
Please join us in our efforts to make positive changes in the hearts and minds at the University of South Alabama.
Paul McGowan, President