Adam Goch, University of South Florida
When his best friend and college classmate, Mikey, was killed by a drunk driver, Adam Goch needed to find a way to honor his friend and cope with his loss.
“Mikey was the type of person I always wished I could be more like,” Goch said. “He was caring and always thinking of others before himself. He also had a raw brilliance and thirst for knowledge.
“His passing hurt very much, but I realized that to do him justice I must commit myself to the commitment we both had made: our education,” he said.
Goch joined the Honors College shortly after his friend’s death as a way to challenge himself and stay motivated.
“I think the Honors College played a crucial role in fostering an intellectual confidence that may have previously been lacking,” he said. “I entered SPC with less confidence in myself than I probably should have had. The Honors College helped to embolden me.”
He graduated from the Honors College in May 2008 as that year’s Apollo Award winner and transferred to USF to major in politics with a minor in philosophy and economics.
He is motivated by the pursuit of a greater understanding of the world in the belief that he will utilize that understanding to help people who have been oppressed.
“I try to follow the adage: learn all you can and serve the oppressed,” he said.
He credits many of the Honors College staff and faculty with being supportive of him and his goals. But there is one supporter who stands out above the rest.
“My biggest support comes from my fiancée, Genevieve, who is always able to keep me on an even keel,” Goch said.
He wants to encourage other students to work to attain their goals.
“I think most people, given a subject that grabs them, could be capable honors students,” Goch said. “The qualities most necessary are tenacity and a desire for knowledge.
“Work hard and find something you love, whether academically, professionally, or personally,” he said. “Pursue that which you love with everything you have.”
He graduated from USF in December, 2010.