It Takes a Village

 
 

As I reflect on my journey, I’m humbled to know that I didn’t get to this point by myself. The saying “It takes a village to raise a child” is 100% true. To my family, close friends, coaches, teachers, mentors, and teammates, thank you for investing your time and energy into making me a better version of myself. This journey is not meant to be walked alone and I wholeheartedly believe that God has intentionally placed each one of you in my life to help along the way.

To Vanderbilt University and the city of Nashville, you will always be a second home for me. I will never forget the lasting memories I've shared with my teammates on the field, in the locker room, and across campus. Throughout my collegiate career, I’ve seen this football program experience a series of highs and lows. However, I am extremely confident Coach Derek Mason and staff are heading in the right direction.

To my family, close friends, coaches, teachers, mentors, and teammates, thank you for investing your time and energy into making me a better version of myself.

One thing Vanderbilt has taught me, is that change is inevitable but growth is optional. I’ve had 2 different head coaches, 3 defensive coordinators, 6 different position coaches, and played 3 different positions during my time at Vanderbilt. From each one of these coaches I’ve learned new things about myself, about the game of football, and about life. Through all of this, I’ve had to develop a process that worked best for me to get the job done no matter the external circumstances. Through developing my process I’ve identified a personal mantra, FOCUS, PERSISTENCE and FAITH. “FOCUS on your goals, be PERSISTENT with your process, and have FAITH in God that everything will work out.”

Who would have thought a tall skinny kid from Lorton, VA would have the opportunity to play at the highest level in the NFL. This is an opportunity I do not take lightly, it truly is nothing short of a blessing. As I approach this next chapter in my life, I am excited to see what God has in store.

 

  Oren Burks

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