Nicholas Orlando, Waynesburg University class of 2012 alumnus was the speaker for “Leave Your Fingerprints” Thursday, Jan. 30. Orlando took this opportunity to reflect on his time at Waynesburg, and how it helped him find his strengths.
Orlando, now a licensed professional counselor at Mental Health Service, looks back on his college career as a time of introspecting. The university gave him an opportunity to uncover his strengths.
“During those times I found communication to be very important,” Orlando said. “It was one of the strengths that kept coming out as I would redo the ‘strengths test’ multiple times in the Leadership Program.”
Orlando described “dialoguing” as critical to him in his self discovery.
Through working as a mentor and dealing with interns, Orlando realized the way he wanted to impact the community “wasn’t necessarily through programs, but through mentoring other people,” Orlando said.
“I realized that change can’t happen in this community unless you start changing the people, or helping people grow. I think that is a little more important,” Orlando said. “How do you help people grow?”
Orlando found his passion as a sex therapist, which he believes is an important subject for many people. He wanted to provide a social service to topics he feels deserve more attention.
“I started to look at other areas that I noticed that we weren’t taking care of: helping people with sexuality,” Orlando said. “What does that necessarily mean? It doesn’t necessarily just mean for sexual orientation or gender identity. I mean for dysfunction for marriages, for couples and for a lot of other things. They go into trauma.”
While Waynesburg University is a small institution, Orlando found having no more than twenty people in his classes at a time made his experience more valuable.
The university’s mission statement of faith, service and learning inspired Orlando to become the mentor he is now.
Orlando also touched on having a “loving disposition” towards others.
“How [do we] fix people? How [do we] change people? It’s more about how we nurture and mentor. How do we help them heal?” Orlando said.