Writing Supplement: Ralph Haddad ’20
“How does this little devil open?!” My father glanced at the closed tupperware, then at my mother. My mother laughed as she sarcastically replied: “I don’t know, Gawgela!”
Gawgela is an Arabic slang verb for googling something. It was the first time I had ever heard that word in context. I froze. As my mother said Gawgela a few more times, all I heard in my mind was “Eureka.”
6 months later, I was one of the youngest business owners in my beloved country Lebanon.
Neither the Tupperware nor my father’s inability to open the Tupperware, however, had anything to do with my business idea. My idea was triggered by the simple word Gawgela. After I heard it, I found myself creating the first customized web-based guide to “Google” attractions and sites in Lebanon.
I strive to take every word around me as an opportunity. I strive to take every word around me as an idea that I can execute. Today, entrepreneurship is not perceived as a career choice in my country, but with Babson, I will be able to change that.
Babson for me is the perfect setting for applying creative thinking in interdisciplinary fields. The reason I am mentioning interdisciplinary fields is because beneath my passion for Business and Innovation comes a passion for Music. Babson is my opportunity to nurture my admiration for both fields.
I find that the field of music is fortified by the field of entrepreneurship, which is why I aim to experiment with new ideas to make music more accessible to people and more practical to musicians.
During my journey at Babson, I see myself stepping on the stage of the Carling-Sorenson Theater with the Babson players, aiming to grow my vocal and theatrical capacities. I see myself sitting on the stool in front of the black Yamaha grand in the Glavin Family Chapel, composing an instrumental piece of music. I see myself discussing Dr. Caroline Daniels’s research on entrepreneurial strategies in the Future Trends and Entrepreneurial Ventures course. I see myself integrating Sir Eric Palson’s User Interface strategies in my web-based startup Gawgela. I see myself at Babson.
It is only most fitting to end with the common saying that we Lebanese have what is called Joi de Vivre, or “Joy of Living.” The Lebanese people have witnessed immense tragedy, and yet always found their way through. The Lebanese grounds have inspired me and taught me everything I know. Today, I strive to learn and innovate in order to develop them. I will use my Babson education to learn, to innovate, to lead, to invent, to impact, and to serve.
Babson is my challenge to become the Entrepreneur and the Musician.