“The Best Offense is a Good Defense.”
“The Best Defense is a Good Offense.”
Arguable idioms, both. But SCSU Owls football defensive standout Kwadir Delgado-McIntyre will tell you the best overall game plan: “Dare to Be Great.”
That’s because cornerback Delgado-McIntyre, a star on and off the field (an NFL draft prospect and an MBA candidate with a 3.88 overall GPA) just won the first annual “Dr. Doug’s Dare to Be Great Award” and its $800 purse. The Southern School of Business award recognizes “a current MBA student in good academic standing who demonstrates a positive attitude, a growth mindset, and a drive for success.”
“Each day I ‘Dare to Be Great’ by tasking myself with the ‘hard things,’” Delgado-McIntyre explained. “I push my limits and embrace the discipline that it takes to remain efficient when burdens become overwhelming. This creates an internal poise that assures me that I can handle any situation. More importantly, it makes me a better person.” Doug Hirschhorn, Ph.D., a Southern alum and founder/senior partner at DRD ADVISORS, LLC created the award with a $25,000 endowed gift to recognize those who strive for excellence, especially in the face of challenge and adversity.
“While I am not part of the award selection committee,” Hirschhorn noted, “I do believe Kwadir was an ideal recipient because he has encountered several areas in his life experience where he chose to Dare to Be Great, rather than take the easier path.
“Daring to Be Great is about believing in yourself and doing the work to achieve great things, especially when the world tells you that you can’t or that you should just give up… the truth is, Daring to Be Great is hard and scary and lonely,” Hirschhorn admitted.
Southern posed several questions to both recipient Delgado-McIntyre and benefactor Hirschhorn regarding their shared philosophy.
SCSU: Kwadir, before you received the “Dare to Be Great Award” did you have a slogan or theme to motivate yourself?
Delgado-McIntyre (D-M): My theme has been based around “cognitive immortality.” To me, this means that nothing can stop me for as long as I remain mentally strong. I can do anything that I put my mind to.
SCSU: What is the greatest obstacle to “Daring to Be Great”?
D-M: Isolation. Isolation can be challenging because it requires affirmation when the majority elects otherwise. It’s easy to fall victim to the “majority” because 10 voices are louder than one. However, the minority makes it. If it were easy, everyone would do it.
SCSU: Let’s say your football career ended tomorrow – we hope it doesn’t, but it could. What’s your “Plan B”?
D-M: One of my favorite quotes is “A jack-of-all-trades is a master of none, but oftentimes, better than a master of one.”
I decided to get my MBA at Southern because I didn’t want to be looked at as just an athlete. I wanted to be a jack-of-all-trades. I have so much more to offer people. I have earned a role as a procurement specialist here at Southern, a huge step in my financial career…
I will also pursue coaching, content-creation, and training in the future, along with a career in planning and management, specifically financial management. I don’t believe in limiting myself, and I understand that this life can take me anywhere as long as I ‘Dare to Be Great.”
SCSU: Dr. Doug, when does someone “decide to give back,” as you are so generously doing with this award?
Dr. Doug Hirschhorn (DD): My time at SCSU was a turning point in my life personally and professionally. I turned 50 this year and started to take an intellectual and emotional inventory of my life, my career, and the relationships I have built. SCSU was my first choice of places to which to give back – Southern gave me so much and there are incredible students like Kwadir who I believe I can make an impact.
SCSU: You met Kwadir at the “Celebration of Philanthropy” event. Was there a spark, a connection, a kindred spirit?
DD: Yes, there was. We both share the desire to Dare to Be Great. Our stories and paths may be different, but as humans we share a common passion of striving toward and achieving greatness in all aspects of our lives.
SCSU: How do you dare yourself to be great on a daily basis, that is, how do you motivate yourself to excel?
DD: Years ago, I promised myself that I wanted to live a life without any regrets. So, anytime I don’t feel like Daring to Be Great, I remind myself that I would rather go for something and fail than live with the regret of having never tried.
SCSU: Kwadir, in a sentence, tell me and our readers how to “Dare to Be Great.”
D-M: Dear Readers: Don’t quit.
To contribute to the “Dr. Doug’s Dare to Be Great Award” or learn about other ways YOU can support School of Business students, please contact Amy Grotzke at Grotzkea1@southernct.edu.