Most of you are probably familiar with the University of Wyoming’s slogan that came to be in 2018 that reads “The World Needs More Cowboys.” This slogan seems to present a different picture to each person who reads it; for some the UW logo comes to mind with the image of a Cowboy on a bucking bronc, for others it brings to mind the idea of hard work and dedication, and yet for some they aren’t quite sure what this slogan could mean.
For me, well, I think there aren’t enough words to describe what it means to be a Cowboy, but I’m going to try. I think first and foremost, a Cowboy isn’t determined by their appearance but instead by their integrity. They do what is right, no matter who is watching, and they live their lives in a way that will direct them toward accomplishing the most good they can. A Cowboy is someone who is honest to a fault and the most loyal friend you will ever have.
A Cowboy is always fair and carries the kindest smile you will ever see and isn’t afraid to lend a helping hand to someone in need. They will show up at the drop of a hat and help until the work is done. I think they are often easy to find as their genuine laughter fills the air and the smiles of the people surrounding them can be felt from miles away. There is a Code of the West (http://cowboyethics.org/cowboy-ethics/), and it has 10 principles I think define a Cowboy and who they are and it helps put into words what makes someone a Cowboy.
1) Live each day with courage.
2) Take pride in your work.
3) Always finish what you start.
4) Do what has to be done.
5) Be tough, but fair.
6) When you make a promise, keep it.
7) Ride for the brand.
8) Talk less and say more.
9) Remember that some things aren’t for sale.
10) Know where to draw the line.
So, you see, a Cowboy to me isn’t defined but what they look like but instead by who they are and what they live by. Being a Cowboy is earned not given. A Cowboy is the person we are all trying to be, and something that isn’t obtained overnight but instead is gained through a lifetime of hard work. To me this slogan means something more than just a good tag line for the University of Wyoming. It means to live with relentless curiosity, to be better tomorrow than I am today and to fight for what I believe in.
I am so lucky that I have met so many Cowboys at UW who are the epitome of the word, and yes, indeed the World Does Need More Cowboys!