LANSING — As Daylan Williams prepares to graduate and head for the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, his Lansing High School achievements tell the story of a young man who strives to be the best he can be and his list of accomplishments has continued to grow. The list could also explain why West Point wants him to continue his education at the much esteemed military academy.
When Sen. Jerry Moran called him to announce his West Point appointment, Williams says he was caught off guard at first when he noticed the call was from the Washington, D.C., area but then it all clicked and he was nervous and excited before he even answered the phone call. During the call, the only thing he could say was, “thank you” and “yes, sir.”
“I can only imagine the look on my face — pure joy and accomplishment,” Williams said.
At West Point, he is most looking forward to the challenge of his leadership skills.
“I will be surrounded by many of the nation’s top young leaders and after it is all said and done I will push myself to stay on the right side of the bell curve,” he said. “I am also looking forward to the physical challenges I will face at the academy. I am training by not letting up in my current leadership roles and conducting physical fitness training regularly.”
After his West Point graduation, he will serve a minimum of five years in the Army. He plans to major in management with a concentration in public administration.
Williams says his rules for striving to be the best he can be are simple in thought, but harder in practice because nobody is perfect. He adheres to his rules.
“My rules are: 1. Know yourself,” Williams said. “Knowing is half the battle. I believe that if you do not know who you are then you will not know what you want. Disclaimer: you will not always know who you are. That is why it is important to constantly challenge yourself and never stop learning. 2. Set goals. Shoot for the stars and hit the moon. You won’t land on the moon by shooting for nothing. Plain and simple. 3. Have a mentor/role model/or someone you want to be like for every aspect of your life. Having one mentor in life is great but I like to think I can model my life after multiple people and personalities. I can take the things I appreciate most from them and still be my own person. This means I won’t just become a replica of that one mentor. 4. Be active and involved. Being active and involved will lead you to more opportunities than you can imagine. Life is about growing and you won’t grow if you never give yourself the opportunity to grow.”
Williams began a project called Leavenworth Lansing Community Corners about four months ago to connect people within the Leavenworth and Lansing communities and encourage citizens and leaders to become more actively involved.