lessons to last a lifetime
in life shouldnt stop with successes, says a 46-year-old
junior interior design major.
wisdom is knowing that you dont know, then Debra
Benditz Morgan is very wise indeed. Never mind that she
cant figure out what she wants to be when she grows
The more I know the more I want to know and realize
how little I actually know, Morgan said.
Shes a junior interior design major, but shes
also 46, a successful (and once not-so-successful) businesswoman
from Houston who is taking some time off to do the marriage
Morgan picked TCU specifically because of class size and
an incredible staff to explore her love of all aspects
of design as well as art history.
It was while studying art history that she found she could
not ignore her love for design, losing herself time and
again in design projects.
It is important to listen to the still, small voice
we all have and let it be a guide, she said.
In Morgans case, that voice has led her down several
Sadly, many of us do things for others and in the
long run end up miserable, she said.
Morgan has been fortunate in fun and profitable work environments
throughout her life. First and before college the first
time around, there was the job in the golf shop.
Then, shortly after, Morgan went to work for her father
selling pipe and decided at the age of 26 to start her
With the success of her business in the oil field tubing
industry, Morgan was named one of the Top 10 working women
in America by Glamour magazine. Her keen business sense
has also been featured in articles for the Houston Chronicle,
USA Today, American Metal Market, Family Business and
A couple of years later she decided to sell her business,
took time off and found a love in culinary school. After
graduation she teamed up with a Certified Master Chef
and started a culinary consulting firm.
Then came the decision to sell out once again and come
back to school to study art history.
Because of the excellent program at TCU, Morgan made the
move to Fort Worth where she also discovered her love
for design in home and work environments.I dont
ever see myself retiring and just traveling or volunteering,
Morgan does, however, feel traveling can be an important
entity for people to experience.
Embrace the differences in other cultures and appreciate
all that we have here, but realize when traveling, it
is not the only way, she said. Try new things
and dont get stuck in a rut.
That happened when she participated in the TCU in Scotland
I loved the study abroad experience ... the way
the classes are presented and the planning and work to
pull it off, she said.
And she had an impact on the students with her.
She really inspired me to immerse myself in all
of the wonderful things that a new culture has to offer,
said Kathryn Murphy, a senior art history major and a
friend of Morgans.
Morgan doesnt preach when giving advice, she only
shares her experiences and if they are able to help someone,
so be it, she said.
We all learn from the hand we are dealt, Morgan
Murphy appreciated that, Morgan said.
I learned so much from Debra on the TCU in Scotland
trip because she brought a lifetime of knowledge and experience
that she shared with the rest of us, Murphy said.
Morgan says shes learned several important experiences
from life: Dont take yourself too seriously and
be flexible. There are lessons even in failure. She started
a second business in the late 80s in New Orleans but could
only keep it running for a year.
It would have been a mistake if I had not learned
anything from it, she said. Most importantly,
if we dont try, we dont get anywhere.
Morgan says shes enjoyed all stages of her life,
including the current marriage stage. She decided being
supportive was important, so she put her degree on hold
and moved to Indianapolis to be with her husband Paul
while he is on an out-of-state assignment.
Marriage stretches people, she said. It
is easy to be selfish and self centered. A successful
marriage requires a commitment, patience, understanding
Paul said he was attracted to Morgan because of her honesty
and her intuitive way of looking into someones heart.
She has a way of talking to you but not at you,
Paul said. She has an easy way of seeing your problems
and helping you in anyway she can.
Paul said Debra has an immense dedication to anything
she commits herself to.
Her dedication and belief in God has molded her
into the woman she is, he said.