Eduardo J. Padrón
Office of the President
300 N.E. Second Avenue
Miami, Florida 33132-2297
Message From the President
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
My first Thanksgiving
I was 15 when I came to the United States from Cuba, and when I first arrived, I felt a great sense of culture shock. Propelled from my comfort zone, I searched for familiarity, for a small piece of what reminded me of “home.”
Then I was invited to my first Thanksgiving dinner by my new American friends. I had never seen so much food on one table. I admit that my long-standing affection for this tradition began with the menu — turkey, stuffing, cranberries and pumpkin pie.
But beyond the comfort food, here were family and friends coming together to express their gratitude. They were grateful that I had joined them, grateful for each other, grateful for so much. That was a different kind of comfort. Something shifted for me that day, and years later, it always does when I remember all that I’ve been given.
Our days can get so busy that it’s easy to lose sight of our many blessings. You are certainly among mine, and I thank you for being wonderful colleagues and for everything you do for our students and community.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones.