One in 2000: Jason Lucas

Dorm: Carter 24 B. “We had a wonderful housing pick last year; we were number two in the housing draw.”

Major: possible Psych/Econ double major

Hometown: I hail from the windy city, Chicago Ill., home of the famous Chicago Bulls.

Is Michael Jordan ever going to play basketball again in the NBA?

Well, I would say he does play basketball. He just plays it a little differently: upstairs. I think that he’s the greatest athlete of the century or actually of all time. Upstairs. Making the decision. Running for someone who’s never played basketball, who has a Harvard Ph.D. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’m just happy he’s there.

So you call Michael Jordan your hometown hero? Do you have another one?

No. I think he’s one of my fondest memories. My hometown hero would have to be my mother. She’s been teaching for 30 years. Having to deal with 30-40 of everyone else’s children day in and day out for 30 years, she deserves an award. She’s been my hero for all of my life.

We’re told that Williams is a fairly diverse place. Would you agree with this statement and why?

I would agree that the minority population is ever-increasing. I would say that Williams is diverse in the fact that it does have a wide array of backgrounds, but I wouldn’t say we are diverse enough. It’s at the point where some people don’t feel comfortable in certain spaces either because of religion, color background, creed, whatever. But I don’t think we are diverse as we could be, diverse as we should be. I think it is getting better, but change is something that everyone wants right then and there.

I would love to see members of the BSU and the JRC dining together, and I would love to see members of VISTA and the BGLTU together, not that any of those groups don’t associate with each other, but its just not on the grander scale. Because we don’t have fraternities and sororities, Williams is a very group-based space. If you play sports then that’s who you associate with. This leads to a certain lack of communication between groups and that is why we are lacking in diversity.

As a minority student, what are your impressions of race relations on campus?

For me, seeing as though I can only speak for myself, I have wonderful race relations. I happened to live in a great entry, Fay 1, last year with two of the most phenomenal JAs that could be asked for. I had a very mixed entry, it was a well-rounded group of people, plus one of my JAs was of Latin descent. I would say that for me, my race relations with people are on the up and up. But as far as the people who I associate with and the genre of people who I know on this campus, I know a lot of people who don’t step outside of their comfort zone and only associate with people who are of their ethnic, religious background. I don’t think that asking someone to step outside of their comfort zone is a scary thing. It may seem scary, but there are so many wonderful people here, we are all intelligent people, we are all diverse people. Trying to learn about other people is what we need to do and I think that’s the race problem.

WOW is one thing that is questioned on the majority side as to whether it is an important or even necessary part of Williams experience. Would you like to comment on that?

I participated in WOW my freshman year and I was a facilitator for WOW this year and I plan to be one as long as I’m here. I think that for minority students here a homebase is very necessary. I say that because since there is such a small number of minority students here compared to the majority that we need to know the resources that are available to us and we need to know how to utilize each other.

I think that with program like WOW that foster good communication with minorities as well as with majorities, I think that it helps us as minorities to be in a better position on this campus. There are students who come here freshman year and who don’t know what resources are available to them. I think that WOW has been and will continue to be a catalyst because we as minority students have issues that are pertinent to us and WOW focuses on those.

Why did you decide to come to Williams?

It wasn’t just a money situation; I got full rides to other schools and I applied to the Ivies just to say that I got in, but I knew that Williams was the place for me. I knew that this was an environment that would foster my education and social life and one in which I could grow. I didn’t want to attend Harvard just because it was Harvard. I wanted to go to a school that would look at me as a person and I knew that place was Williams.

And that’s proven to be true?

Absolutely, I’ve met some of the most intriguing and interesting people that I will ever come across in my life. I’ve done a lot of things that I thought I would never do. I’ve taken on new things that I would have never foreseen myself stepping into and I’ve found passions in things that I never knew existed. With Williams allowing me to choose my own path that has made all of the difference.

Do you have a dream job?

I tell everyone that I don’t plan on working a day past 36. Thitry-six is the prime age for me, to not begin living life, but to begin living life for the day. People don’t live life for today, and that’s one of the scary things. I don’t want to be one of those people who end up with a corporate job right out of college who work themselves to death. One of the most enlightening experiences for me was traveling to France in high school, which enabled me to see that there is so much more that is out there for you. There are wonderful things out there to explore and I don’t think that I should be held down by a job. So for now grad. school is on the horizon.

The final question: this is your chance to say one thing to the entire Williams Community.

Learn to love life, the time is here. If you don’t cherish the simple things and the small things then life isn’t worth living.