Making the Best of Opportunities

On Tuesday, April 10th, a star was born. Andre Ingram, a 32 year rookie who had played 384 games in the minors, had career aspirations of playing in the NBA. Making the NBA is not an easy task; according to research, less than 1% of college basketball players make the NBA, yet alone, even get drafted by a team. However, after spending 10 years in the minors, he was given a chance. He was called up by the Lakers to play in the final two games of the regular season, making his thought-out dream into an actual reality.

Ingram 2

Ingram had been waiting for this moment his whole life; with a few minutes left against the NBA’s best record team, the Houston Rockets, Ingram was put into the game. Everyone was clapping and cheering as well as the other team showed respect, especially star point guard Chris Paul. It was a great moment everyone cherished; a person making it to the NBA after years of waiting patiently but working hard to get to where he wanted to be. But this wasn’t just a moment for Ingram; this was a chance to show the NBA world what they were missing. Little did people know that he would make an impact right from the start; he made a total of four 3-pointers, accumulating to 19 points on 6/8 field goals.

Ingram 1

What a great moment that was for the NBA. A dream turned into a reality in a few days span. A 32 year-old rookie showing the world that age is just a number, and if you can dream it, you can ultimately achieve it.

I thought of how Andre Ingram’s story can apply to our lives in many different ways, whether it is regarding our mindset, careers, or endeavors. We have all been through challenges in our lives that we once thought we couldn’t get through; however, through hard work and perseverance, we’re able to get where we want to be as long as we put our words into actions. Sometimes, we just need that opportunity to show others our worth and potential, whether it is during an interview, a class project, or simply at work.

How can we learn from Andre Ingram’s journey and his rise to stardom? Here are a few takeaways from this moment:

  1. Hard work really does pay off: Ingram worked hard throughout his years in the developmental league, holding a record of 713 3-pointers and having the 5th most points in G-League history. As students and professionals, we really see how hard work can pay off as well, whether it is through networking, landing opportunities, or doing well in school. By working hard but also working smart, we can get to where we want to be in our lives and careers.
  2. Patience is a virtue: Ingram had waited patiently for his chance to show the league what he was made of. He spent 10 years in the minors and was finally able to attain his goal this past week. We should always remember that sometimes being patient in our careers is something we have to do; we try to rush things and want each of our goals to be accomplished as quickly as possible. However, we need time to develop our skills and gain the experience necessary to get to where we want to go and do what we want to do. We must trust the process and look at it as a marathon, not a sprint.
  3. When opportunity knocks, open the door: Simply put, always be prepared, for when the time comes, you’ll be able to shine just as Ingram did. When Ingram was finally given a chance, he made the best of it and showed people what he was made of. We should be the same way whenever we are given an opportunity to accomplish one of our goals. For example, if you have been trying to get your foot in the door at your dream company and are finally given a chance to interview and land a job offer there, make the best out of it. You should already have a firm grasp of why you want to be at that company as well as what you want in your career. Be prepared for anything; by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail, so it is always important to be prepared because you never know what may happen.

Andre Ingram truly signifies a person who dealt with much adversity but showed resilience and worked hard to get where he wanted to be. Although it took many years to fulfill his dream, Ingram was ultimately able to make it into a reality. I hope that we can all take his story and make it into something valuable and be inspired to achieve our own aspirations despite how long it may take or how far off they are from our current state. Those aspirations may not even be far off, so continue to shoot for the moon and if you don’t make it, you can reach the stars (and even be one) just as Ingram did.

#JWoW

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