About Me: Call me “Sensei”

     I’m Brandon Holmes, most people know me as BJ. You don’t really have to call me “Sensei”… Yet. I have always been a huge fan of martial arts and action films and I have dreams of opening my own dojo after retirement– 50 years from now. I took karate for many years and I am a 2nd degree Black Belt in Isshin-ryū. Everyone wants recognition and respect but, instead of being called “Mr. President” or “Sir,” I’d like to be Sensei one day. I look at that as odd proof of my coming of age..

Brandon is such a plain name; not to mention there are half a dozen of them in my graduating class of Monroe-Woodbury HS. Coming out of high school, I had dreams of becoming the next president of the United States of America– although, being class President for four years straight brought nothing but teenage drama and bad blood. Junior prom decorations still haunt my dreams.

In light of all the horse crap we have been calling politics in the past decade, I decided to become a journalist. My ultimate goal is to develop a fan-base through my work as a correspondent or investigative journalist and carry that over to my own television or radio broadcast i.e. Piers Morgan, Rachel Maddow, Anderson Cooper, “THE Silver-Fox.” Please, save the distasteful jokes.

I first attended Wheaton College, a tiny, private, liberal arts school in the small, secluded town of Norton, MA. On top of each graduating class consisting of roughly 150 students or less, the school was extremely overpriced and (in my personal opinion) overrated. Just to get my point across…. EXTREMELY OVERRATED and $56,000 a year. For a liberal arts degree. Yes. Somewhere in the world, this is happening. I live with a “do it yourself” attitude, for the most part. No matter how much you pay for the knowledge you receive, what you do with is in your hands. Journalism is the ideal field for that mentality.

I decided to tough it out one more year at Wheaton and now… Here I am: a Fall 2011 transfer to the University at Albany in New York’s beautiful, upstate, capital region. Bigger school, stronger focus, better living.

Africa and the Middle East are two areas that really peak my interests. During my generation, America has become much more hands on, prominent in the affairs of Africa and the Middle East. I feel like this may be the slow revival of foreign correspondence as the world witnessed during World War II through Edward Murrow and the elites at NBC and the roots of the AP. That’s my dream.

We’re all here to learn but, I want to teach.

BJ Holmes


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