George Mason University

News at Mason

Meet a New Patriot: Desmond Moffitt, Gates Millennium Scholar

August 28, 2013

Text By Frances Womble; video by Paul King

Desmond Moffitt of Chesapeake, Va., went to 22 different schools between kindergarten and his high school graduation. From an early age, Moffitt knew he wanted to go to college and escape a chaotic and unsteady home life.

“In fifth grade, I visited my first university and fell in love,” he says.

With the guidance of his teachers, Moffitt signed up for band, accelerated classes, volunteer work and tutoring in order to push ahead.

His hard work paid off. Moffitt, an incoming George Mason University freshman, was selected as one of 1,000 recipients of the 54,000 Gates Millennium Scholarship applicants. He plans to pursue a degree in history with a minor in philosophy.

After moving so often, Moffitt is looking forward to making George Mason his home for the next four years.

“When I visited other potential schools, my hunger for culture and diversity was not satisfied,” he says. “However, through the Honors College of the Mason Nation, I feel like I still receive quality education while being exposed to the Mason idea.”

Moffitt felt so at home at Mason that he turned down full academic scholarships to other schools.

“I put my deposit down at Mason before I learned I was a Gates Millennium Scholar,” he says. “Being accepted at the Honors College was an opportunity that was impossible to turn down.”

Over the next four years, Moffitt hopes his time at Mason will lead to a future in academia.

“Every educator I’ve come across has changed my life,” he says. “I want to help people the way I was helped. My teachers helped save my life, and I don’t know where I would be without them.”

“I’m going to be so giddy once I set foot on campus,” Moffitt adds. “I’m looking forward to learning different cultures, finding internships, and maybe even studying abroad. I already know I’m always going to have Patriot Pride.”