Jason Mayorga is a junior midfielder on the University of the District of Columbia men's soccer team. He is a Silver Spring, MD native, and he is studying Accounting.
The UDC Men's soccer team is full of diversity. Each player has different backgrounds and socio-economic status. Soccer is the vehicle that creates fellowship. Local and international student-athletes have chosen UDC as a place of study and an opportunity to grow. The players voted on UDC standing for a United Diverse Culture.
Diversity means the opportunity to discover experiences that I wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to experience myself. Experiences that enlighten your empathetic sensibilities and impact your outlook on life itself. Diversity minimizes ignorance and improves education of self and others. The locker room creates a unique opportunity for diversity to be explored. The motley sound of music that resonates through the locker room and through the hallways of the athletic building, exemplifies the cultural assimilation that occurs from sharing many bonding experiences with one another.
As a local from Silver Spring, I enjoy seeing the diversity within our local players. The many backgrounds help us understand the differences in cultures and values while still being able to relate to one another. Being able to learn about these differences help set a level of base knowledge that lets us integrate the many international student-athletes, who are adapting to US culture, with ease.
Diversity is to be acknowledged and celebrated. With greater appreciation of it, we can develop greater empathy and understanding of each other both on and off the field.