Zach Willis is a young man who knows what he wants. He knows that to achieve his goals, there needs to be an organized plan implemented piece by piece. Patience, strength, discipline, good old hard work and a positive attitude are crucial. Zach is a junior working toward a BA in graphic design, and he plans on getting his master’s degree to become an architect.
Willis is not new to the concept of being responsible and organized. He is from Belton, Missouri, where he started playing football in seventh grade. On Washburn’s field, he wears number 34 as a running back. He practices the physical and mental discipline needed to mold and strengthen himself to be a professional. He continues to hold a mindset of core values and an old-school work ethic. He has learned to stay focused so he can make it through distractions, and knows that learning and understanding who you are will keep you on your own path.
Willis started out studying in business classes and later discovered that it wasn’t his greatest interest.
“I found that being more creative and thinking outside the box was more what I want to do. So, graphic design and architecture is that for me,” said Willis.
For Willis, it takes out of the box thinking and creative problem-solving skills to accomplish his goals. He said he sacrifices his free time and dedicates it to the steps it takes to succeed. He maintains a 3.5 GPA as he plows through required courses, which include completing many difficult art projects. Both semesters last year, he studied art history under Madeline Eschenburg.
“What stood out to me was his enthusiasm. He has a really happy, eager personality,” said Eschenburg.
She said that he was one of the only students in class to speak up to answer questions, and, when he did, he kept it fun. Willis also has the insight to know when to ask for help. Eschenburg said that he is great at making sure he understands the topic clearly by knowing how to communicate his needs.
Each person’s journey in life is different, but the skills that Willis demonstrates will be effective in any application.
Edited by Shelby Hanson, Jessica Galvin