Fueled by her dual passions for selfless service and psychology, Grace Vaughn ’23 is an Aggie with big plans for her future.
Like many students here at Texas A&M University, Vaughn says she was overwhelmed by the number of people during her initial days on campus. Now a psychology major with a minor in Russian, she was also unsure of what career path she wanted to pursue and how to get involved. Fortunately, Aggieland has a way of making a campus filled with more than 70,000 people feel like home. Vaughn is currently the president of the Maroon Coats and a member of 1st Wing Staff in the Corps of Cadets.
“My time in Aggieland has made a huge impact on who I am now and on my goals for the future,” said Vaughn, a second-generation Aggie from Katy, Texas. “Coming into Texas A&M, I did not have a lot of guidance or prior knowledge about organization involvement, academic paths or career plans. But, thanks to the support system of other Aggies and the various programs at Texas A&M, I have been able to be a part of more than I ever would have expected during my time here. I am extremely thankful for the way this has broadened my learning, worldview, friendships and ambitions.”
The Corps of Cadets helped Vaughn tremendously on her journey within Aggieland, and learning traditions and bonding with her fellow cadets helped her feel even more at home.
“My time in the Corps has been full of plenty of challenges, but these challenges are exactly what have built character within me over the past four years,” Vaughn noted. “Through the Corps, I gained an up-close-and-personal experience of the core traditions of Texas A&M. This helped me to fully grasp the meaning and purpose behind the values of excellence, integrity, leadership, loyalty, respect and selfless service that our university has promoted since it was founded. I learned how to persevere through difficulty, build bonds with diverse individuals and lead my peers. These lessons will stick with me for years to come.”
While at Texas A&M, Vaughn has found a deep passion for selfless service. In addition to her involvement in Aggie Muster Committee, Mays Business Fellows and Ryllies Women’s Organization, she has worked on campus for the Department of Student Activities since December 2020 and as a teaching assistant in the former Department of International Studies.
“My passion for selfless service is motivated by the knowledge that others who came before me also made sacrifices that allow me to be where I am now,” Vaughn said. “Selfless service is meant to recognize their contributions and aims to make the same things possible for those who are to come after me. Additionally, I have found that, as paradoxical as it sounds, we are able to have the greatest joy when we are making truly selfless sacrifices for others.”
After graduation in May 2023, Vaughn plans to begin her career as an associate consultant for Bain & Company, a Boston-based global management consulting firm. Her long-term goals are to one day start her own business and eventually author a book. No matter what she does, however, Vaughn says the invaluable lessons she learned here at Texas A&M will always stay with her.
“My experiences within Aggieland have tested and refined the characteristics of integrity, work ethic, relationship-building and ambition in my life,” she said. “The importance of these qualities is not diminished when we leave college. Instead, these values become even more important. I feel equipped to confidently enter my post-graduate career because the academic rigor and organizational richness of Texas A&M has ingrained these pivotal qualities within me.”