Now that my time as a student at Flockjay is coming to a close, I have been thinking a great deal about the myth of the American Dream.

In its most current incarnation, the American Dream resides in the belief that anyone in our country, regardless of their background, can attain their own version of success in a society in which upward mobility is possible for everyone. It’s a vision grounded in our most sacred ideals as a nation: democracy, freedom, opportunity, and equality.

And yet, it is clear that we do not approach this dream on equal footing. Who, in fact, even has access to this dream? When we look upon American History, we know that our nation’s beautiful and self-professed ideals sit uncomfortably alongside the systemic and institutional oppression that we find in the very foundations of our country.

In light of this, I find that Flockjay is so much more than a tech sales boot camp.

I am grateful for all the hard and soft sales skills I have acquired through this specialized training. But I feel there are even more urgent gifts this program has bestowed upon us. Flockjay is, in fact, a transformative and emancipatory educational project. It has given all of us, from diverse walks of life, the tools to achieve upward mobility, and in turn, to also uplift our families, our friends, and our communities. It has taught us that our success stems from the camaraderie and solidarity we have found together.

As a nation, we are at a fragile crossroads. We can lean into our divisions or come together with the shared goal of prosperity, justice, and dignity for all. Flockjay offers a blueprint for working together to create inclusive and positive change.

The Mighty Ducks of Batch 9 have demonstrated how much we can achieve both individually and together when we cooperate, collaborate, and support one another. This group of students all come from distinct backgrounds, yet our true strength resides in our very differences!

As I look out upon the faces of my fellow students and teachers tonight, I feel pride. This is America. Here is a true representation. This is the America that calls to me. A place where we can all dream. A place where we can all achieve our ancestors’ wildest dreams. 

Oriana De Francesco is a recent Flockjay graduate. She is currently embarking on an exciting job search where she hopes to connect with organizations that provide meaningful solutions to real-world problems. She has a particular interest in the Fintech sector and democratizing finance worldwide, especially in emerging markets.

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