This Pirate hopes to apply his ECU
leadership experience toward a career.
Jorge Florimon has his sights set on a career in student affairs
Rising senior and third-year orientation assistant Jorge Florimon hopes to turn his leadership roles at East Carolina University into a career.
“A lot of the activities that I’m involved in on campus require me to be in leadership positions and for some reason, I never really thought of that as a career path,” said Florimon. He said his perspective changed after speaking with advisors on the orientation staff who pursued careers in student affairs.
“Coming in as a freshman, I didn’t know that I was going to join any organization,” said Florimon. “The first thing that (interested me) was the Residence Hall Association. I got really involved. I started traveling a lot with them to different conferences. Within RHA, I got to see different leadership opportunities on campus (with a) variety of organizations.”
The more he researched, said Florimon, the more he wanted to become even more involved.
As a member of RHA, Florimon acted as the president of Jones Residence Hall. The following year, he became the vice president of RHA and a resident assistant. “When I come into an organization, my goal is to leave the organization better than it was (and) to make sure that it moves forward and not backward,” said Florimon.
Now, Florimon is part of the National Residence Hall Honorary, Collide Campus Ministry, Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity and ECU Ambassadors. As an ECU Ambassador, Florimon volunteers in the local community. “The best thing ever was the special populations prom that the ambassadors hold every year for special needs kids in the area,” said Florimon. “Spending a day decorating and then the next day, seeing those kids come in with the smiles on their faces…was the most amazing experience.”
Florimon has also volunteered for Relay for Life, an autism walk and the Holy Culture festival last spring. For the last three summers, Florimon has worked as an orientation assistant, helping the next generation of Pirates.
“A lot of people say that by the time they get to their senior year, they’re ready to go,” said Florimon. “For some reason, I feel like I still have something left to do at ECU. I don’t know what it is, but I’m going to find it.” After receiving a bachelor’s degree in public health, Florimon plans to gain a master’s degree in student affairs. He hopes to work in the new ECU student center and advance to a leadership position in a school system.
What drew you to ECU?
I came to the football game in 2010 and it was amazing. There was a Hail Mary and the whole stadium went quiet and then erupted into chaos when we won. I was like, “This is where I need to be.” I can’t find this spirit in New York. I can’t find this spirit anywhere. Ever since that, I was like, “this is what I need to be.” I came to Orientation and that was it. I got here in the fall and I was like, “Ok, I don’t know much, but I’m going to make it work.” Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium is my favorite place in the world.
Have you always been interested in education?
The more I got involved on campus, the more organizations I joined, and the more advisors I met at ECU – I did find that passion for higher education and student affairs. It’s not that I want to teach, it’s just that I want to help the next generation right where people start. People start making moves right after college. I want to help them gain everything out of college like I did and move on from it and use it, not just get a degree and go work somewhere. I want them to prosper in college and then take that information and go change the world. That’s one of my dreams. I want to leave this world better than when I came into it. I really just want to take everything I’ve learned at ECU and pay it forward.
What are some things you think you can change about the current educational system?
The areas I really want to go into are cultural inclusivity and diversity. I want to bring more awareness. There’s a lot of turmoil going on in our society right now. You should address the issue in high school, middle school and by the time (students) get to college, fully educate them on the differences and how to come together before it reaches a boiling point like it is in the news nowadays. I definitely want to make sure that everyone is culturally aware of everything that’s out there. I came to ECU not knowing a lot about European cultures and now that I’m here, I’ve met so many friends and so many people that I’m like, “Wow, I didn’t know this was out there.” Now I want to travel. I want to go to Europe and experience these cultures for myself. I want people to leave their institutions well rounded and take that information and go do something about it. We won’t have these issues anymore.
Photography by: Cliff Hollis
Written by: Summer Tillman
College: Health and Human Performance
Major: Public Health Studies
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York
Clubs & Organizations: National Residence Hall Honorary, Collide Campus Ministry, Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity, ECU Ambassadors
Place on Campus: Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium
Hangout: Anywhere that my best friends are.
Place to Eat: Cookout
Class: Dr. Elizabeth Jones' Anatomy class
Hobbies and Interests: Dancing Salsa, Merengue and Bachata and I love teaching my friends how. Socializing, learning and gaining knowledge.
TV Show: "Scandal," "Grey’s Anatomy," "How to Get Away with Murder"
Musician/band: Marc Anthony and J. Cole
Movie: "The Lion King"
Most Influential Professor: Dr. Elizabeth Jones
Dream Job: ECU Chancellor
You Can’t Live Without: My friends
Role Model: My sister
Words to Live By: "You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one."
Advice for fellow students: Get active. Become a well-rounded individual, and learn from your mistakes.
Something cool about ECU you wish you knew during your first year: How ECU was going to shape me as an individual, as a student and a man. I wish I would’ve known what ECU was going to do for me. I wish I could’ve had a glimpse into my future to know where I was going to end up at the end of my ECU career.
"You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one."
– Jorge Florimon