Senior Interviews – Amy Oplinger

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Major: I am a Spanish Education major with a minor in General Sociology.

What is your role in the Ambassadors and when did you join?

I’m a General Board Ambassador and have been a member since Spring 2012.

What is your fondest Ambassadors and/or IUP memory?

One of my favorite Ambass memories was the whole experience of attending and presenting at CASE ASAP 2012 in Indianapolis.  As a new member, it was a great way to get to know older members of the organization.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to continue on to grad school to study Hispanic Linguistics.

Oh no! You’re stuck on a stranded island! What 3 items do you bring?

If I were stranded on an island, I would bring my iPod, Candis Warren, and lots of clean underwear!

If you could have dinner with 5 deceased people, who would they be?

If I could have dinner with 5 deceased people, I would choose my grandfather (PopPop), my “adopted” grandfather (Grandpa Trump), Robin Williams, Jimmy Stewart, and Martin Luther King Jr. 

If you could relive any moment in your life, which would it be?

I would relieve my semester abroad in Spain, in a heartbeat!

If you could learn any language, what would it be?

If I could learn a fourth language, I would choose Italian. Do you think if I eat enough pizza and pasta, I will naturally acquire the language?

What’s one interesting fact that no one knows about you?
Most people do not know that I am obsessed with Betty Boop!

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Senior Interviews – Zachary Russell

15188604243_89422439c5_zMajor: Nursing

Ambassador Role: General Member on Finance Committee

Joined Ambassadors: Spring 2013

What advice would you give to fellow Ambassadors?

Enjoy Ambassadors, be as involved as you can be and this organization will teach you so much.

Besides Ambassadors organizations are you involved in?

Supplemental Instruction Leader, Phi Delta Theta Fraternity Member, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Honor Society

If you were on American Idol what song would you chose to sing and why?

House Party by Sam Hunt. It is currently my favorite song and I actually know all the words to it!

What is your favorite Ambassador memory?

The Ambassador retreats!! Fun times with fun people.

What cereal best describes you as a person?

Frosted Flakes, because there more than good. They are great!

What are your plans after graduation?

Work in an intensive care unit for 2 years and then go back to Nurse Anesthesia School. I want to also get a master in Nurse Administration.

What will you take away from Ambassadors with you?

I will take the amazing people I have met, the leadership skills, the pride it gave me in IUP, and the amazing opportunities I have been able to be a part of.

Senior Interviews – Aaron Douthit

15806164431_84f9ff3e4b_zMajor: BSN: Nursing MSN: Nursing Administration

Ambassador Role: General Member on Special Events Committee

Joined Ambassadors: Spring 2013

What advice would you give to fellow Ambassadors?

Enjoy your college years. They go by way too fast. Go to CASE ASAP!

Besides Ambassadors organizations are you involved in?

Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society, IUP Council of Trustees: Student Trustee, IUP Cooperative Association Board of Directors, Develop Mental Studies: Peer Educator

If you were on American Idol what song would you chose to sing and why?

Get Low Acoustic Version by Dan Henig. It’s my favorite song to play.

What is your favorite Ambassador memory?

CASE ASAP in St. Louis with some really incredible and fun ambassadors.

What cereal best describes you as a person?

Cheerios because I’m Heart Healthy

What are your plans after graduation?

Begin working as a nurse in the Intensive Care Unit travel a lot with Carly Lewis.

What will you take away from Ambassadors with you?

Networking skills, Memories, professionalism, Carly Lewis

Senior Interviews – Gabrielle Bradshaw

15784378926_bbb866f973_zMajor: English Pre-Law

What is your role in Ambassadors?

I’m a member of the Administration Committee so I do whatever Brooke tells me!

When did you join Ambassadors?

I joined as a junior, sadly.

What is your favorite Ambassador memory?

I would have to say the trip to St. Louis, Missouri for the CASE ASAP Convention. It was my first experience really getting to bond with some of the members and I think we made enough memories to fill a book, or two.

Do you have any advice to new members?

Don’t be afraid! You were accepted into IUP Ambassadors for a reason— get out there, be yourself and enjoy the time you have within this amazing organization.

Besides the Ambassadors, are there any other groups or organizations you’re associated with?

I am a member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honors Society, The National Society of Leadership and Success, I’ve taught spinning at the HUB’s Fitness Facility for four years, and I’ve been known to dabble within the Office of International Education.

If you could have any super power, what would you choose and why? 

This is always tough for me, but I would probably choose the ability to fly. After years of watching Harry Potter and taking the opportunity to go sky diving, I think it’d be pretty cool.

What are your plans after your graduation?

Great question. The plan as of now is to participate in a year-long internship with AmeriCorp Vista and work in the field of Community Development somewhere in Arizona or North Carolina. I would really like to come back to the world of academia someday and work in Higher Education – and possibly visit Europe again with my mum.

Senior Interviews – Billy Micheaux

15188605553_73db5f3982_oMajor: Interior Design

Why did you choose to come to IUP?

Well at first I didn’t want to come here because my mother did and I wanted to have my own school. But I didn’t know what I wanted to major in and IUP offered the most options so I came here.

Why did you choose to major in Interior Design?

I first came here as an undeclared business major and was looking into pre-engineering or music. But as I was looking through the list of majors, I saw Interior Design and thought that’d be interesting to do! I fell in love with it and here I am, about to graduate with a degree that was made on an impulsive decision. I found interior design to be so fascinating because as interior design majors, we’re creating the works of art for people to live in.

What organizations are you involved in at IUP?

I am involved with IUP Ambassadors, International Interior Design Association (IIDA), American Society Interior Design (ASID), and Pride Alliance.

What is your favorite Ambassador memory?

My favorite Ambassador memory would have to be going to CASE ASAP in Indianapolis.

 

Senior Interviews – Samantha Baydar

15622646928_725d4d1b3e_zMajor:  Music Education

What is your role in Ambassadors?

I’m not on e-board, but I lead tours occasionally and I’m a member of the special events committee!

When did you join Ambassadors?

Back in 2013.

What is your favorite Ambassador memory?

The admissions expo day that needed one more tour leader… And I surprised myself by doing it!  It was exciting!

Do you have any advice to new members?

Don’t stress about learning Ambassadors names.  The more events you go to, the easier it will be to learn who everyone is and make friends.  Also, attend your committee meetings.  They need you and you’ll be a big help while having a good time.

Besides the Ambassadors, are there any other groups or organizations you’re associated with?

I’m in Sigma Alpha Iota (music fraternity), Delta Alpha Pi Honors Society, and PCMEA (Pennsylvania Collegiate Music Educators Association).

If you could have any super power, what would you choose and why?

Teleportation… Because it would be much easier to almost be in two places at one time!  Travel time would be eliminated, making my life much nicer!

What are your plans after your graduation?  

Get a teaching job as a music educator and eventually move to Minnesota and get a degree in instrument repair from Redwing.

Senior Interviews – Brooke Bachy

Major: Early childhood education15623199340_28a9afa9f7_z

How can you say Ambassador’s impacted your college career?

Ambassadors has allowed me to grow into the person I am today. With all of the great opportunities I had, I was given the amazing chance to grow not only professionally, but into an adult. Between networking events, being on executive board, and just working with the greatest group of individuals on campus, I directed my college career in a more professional way than I imagined I would have coming in. I am truly grateful for all of the chances that Ambassadors gave me, and I will forever love the organization.

How did you hear about the Ambassador’s? Were you nominated or did you self-nominate?

I heard about the Ambassadors because of Daisy Kmetz. Daisy and I worked in the same preschool center. She approached me about nominating me for Ambassadors, and I didn’t really think much of it at the time. I was an incoming freshman at the time, and I was overwhelmed with the thought of college as it was. Daisy nominated me, and much to my surprise, I was selected to be an Ambassador. I figured it would be good to get involved on campus, but I would have never guessed Ambassadors would have done for me what it truly did.

What is a memory from Ambassadors that has always stuck with you?

One of my favorite memories is my very first senior send-off. As I said, I was given the amazing opportunity to join as a freshman. Coming to my first senior send-off will always stick with me. I will never forget seeing how close this amazing group of people truly are. I will never forget sitting in the Parlor, tearing up for someone who I didn’t even know, all because people spoke so highly of this person.

Besides Ambassadors, what else do you like to do in your time here at IUP outside of schoolwork? Are you part of any other clubs?

Outside of Ambassadors and school work, I was given the opportunity to hold executive board positions in Kappa Delta Pi, Beta Gamma Chapter (Education Honor Society [chairperson of hospitality, co-chair person of workshops and publicity]) and Association of Early Childhood Educators (President). Also, I was selected as one of three education majors in all of IUP to be a representative in the TEACH initiative. This initiative allows me to be a mentee to a PA Teacher of the Year nominee/award winner, and attend conferences as a representative of IUP’s education program.

How has Ambassadors aided in your major?

Ambassadors has aided in my major in many ways. Being an Ambassador has given me the ability to step outside of my comfort zone and hold executive positions I would have never imagined myself holding. Ambassadors has also given me the chance to connect with professors on a more intimate level because they see how passionate I am about IUP and IUP’s early childhood education department. I would have never guessed that the title of “IUP Ambassador” would have given me more strength and pride in myself and my schoolwork throughout my college career.

What do you plan on doing after you graduate?

Ideally, getting a job in an elementary school would be great! All throughout my college career, I pictured myself moving far away from Western Pennsylvania. Although I find myself questioning that nowadays, I would still like to end up in a suburban-urban area of either Virginia, Maryland, or North Carolina. As for professionally, I would love to be a 4th grade teacher.

What will you miss the most about Ambassadors and IUP in general?

I’ll miss the people, without a doubt. There is never a day that goes by whenever I don’t see an Ambassador on campus, and we stop and ask about each other’s day or how it’s going. I’ve never experienced a more genuine group of individuals, and being around these great people will be the one thing I miss. After all, as you get older, you find out that your friends start being the people who have the same goals as you. Even though we all hail from different backgrounds, and want to end up in different futures, we have the common goal of being the best we can be. This doesn’t just apply to the IUP Ambassadors; this applies to all the friends I’ve made at IUP.

What person from Ambassadors has inspired you the most?

This is the question I thought longer and harder about than any of the previous. I would have to say that Sara inspires me the most. She is compassionate, caring, and always willing to help in whatever way she can. She takes a personal interest in every single Ambassador’s life. She’s always there to lend a shoulder to cry on, or an ear to listen. She’s exactly what I would want to be in my future classroom. I want to know that my students can come to me with any concern, problem, or life event and that I’ll be able to channel my inner Sara and make her proud!

Senior Interviews – Dave Phelan

 

Major: Triple Major of Accounting, Economics and Finance

What is your role in the Ambassadors?

My role in the Ambassadors has been a general member and I have always been a member of the University Relations committee.

When did you join the Ambassadors?

Spring of 2013

What is your fondest Ambassadors and/or IUP memory?

My favorite memory as an Ambassador was the Spring Retreat in 2013. The retreat was fantastic and I really enjoyed getting to know the other members of Ambassadors better along with working through obstacles with one another.

What are your plans after graduation?

I have received and accepted a job offer from Deloitte and Touche in their Philadelphia office as an auditor for them. I start that job next fall so I will be finishing up my schooling and begin studying for the CPA exam between now and then.

Oh no! You’re stuck on a stranded island! What 3 items do you bring?

I would bring a computer, the series Band of Brothers, and something to hydrate with.

If you could have dinner with 5 deceased people, who would they be?

I would love to have a dinner with Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Martin Luther King Jr, George Washington, and my grandfather.

If you could relive any moment in your life, which would it be?

One of my favorite moments in my life was when I was eleven and I climbed to the top of Grouse Mountain outside of Vancouver, British Columbia. The sun was just starting to set and the Pacific Ocean sits to the west of the city. As the sun hit the ocean and reflected back into the city the view was amazing. I’d love to be back on top of that mountain to see that view again.

If you could learn any language, what would it be?

I would like to learn Spanish if I could learn any one language.

What’s one interesting fact that no one knows about you?

I have to ambition to climb the seven summits before I die. Not sure if this goal will ever become a reality, but if I have the time and money to do it I plan to.