Una Semana en La Republica Dominicana (A Week in the Dominican Republic)

Created by Ashley Pinney, 2011-2012 Career Advising Fellow

I spent last week serving as a staff advisor on the Dominican Republic Alternative Spring Break Service  Trip. My group of 12 students and myself volunteered with a Dominican organization called Cambiando Vidas (Changing Lives). The goal of the organization is to build homes for members of communities who could not afford to do so without the organization’s assistance. For five days we shoveled, sifted, hammered, mixed, and painted. It was a really amazing experience and the students (and myself) got a lot out of it.

My students and the community members after the 1st day

We had a lot of interactions with community members both on and off the construction site. After work one day we played softball all together and it was a lot of fun (despite my team losing haha).

My softball team!

After we finished work on the last day we went to a beach in a different part of the island. It was great to relax after the hard work we had done. The students did a great job of forging relationships with community members and I commend them on their compassion and their willingness to learn something new (whether that was Spanish, how to build a house, or how to build relationships). I am grateful to Elon and the Student Professional Development Center for allowing me to go!

Pretty beach we visited

It’s All Greek to Me

Created By Ashley Pinney, 2011-2012 Career Advising Fellow

On Saturday I got the unique opportunity to  help out with sorority recruitment. I was never in a sorority at William and Mary and didn’t know much about the Office of Greek Life and I was curious to learn more about it. Plus, I think Shana Plasters and Eden Esters and really great student affairs professionals and I wanted to help them out.

The goal of Saturday afternoon was to be available to listen to women’s concerns and issues in regards to choosing a sorority. We couldn’t offer any advice but we were able to ask them a lot of questions to help them make  their own decision when it came to how they were going to pref. Some ladies came to my table full of excitement. Others came to my table crying. It was an emotional time for them. They were also exhausted from the 5 jam-packed days that preceded this moment. I really enjoyed the experience and listening to the ladies.

Elon Student Affairs Professionals

Discover N.C.

Created by: Ashley Pinney 2011-2012 Career Advising Fellow

Two weeks ago I accompanied 20 students and Henry Walling on a Discover N.C trip (a program put on by the Office of Student Activities). We went to see the Carolina Hurricans play the Philadelphia Flyers in Raleigh. What a game! Everyone had a really great time and I was able to meet a lot of first-year students I would have never met if I hadn’t gone on the trip.

As I am charged with reaching out to students and informing them of the services my office provides, trips like these are great ways to do just that. A few first-year students asked for my business card and I look forward to assisting them this semester!

Swapping my Slingbacks for Sneakers

By: Ashley Pinney, 2011-2012 Career Counseling Fellow

I chose to work in the field of higher education to make a lot of money. False.

I chose to work in the field of higher education because I love working with young adults. I love their energy and enthusiasm. They are curious and intellectual and working with them is a real pleasure. When Elon Outdoors asked me to be the staff advisor for their day hike to Pilot Mountain, I jumped on the opportunity. I like working in higher education (especially at a small institution like Elon) because I am able to interact with students in a variety of contexts. Spending the day with 18 students, hiking up a beautiful mountain, inserting career advice here and there in our conversations was a lot of fun and a really enjoyable experience. Talking with students outside of the office and getting to know them in an informal setting is a great way to build relationships. They asked me a lot of questions about what I do at Elon and I encouraged them to come see me in my office. Going on these types of trips with students is a good form of outreach and it is something I want to continue to do this year.

Me with Elon Outdoors!

What a lovely view

Elon University…It’s about Community

By: Ashley Pinney, 2011-2012 Career Counseling Fellow, Video by: Katherine Thomas

This past weekend Marianne and I attended our first Elon football game. It was a beautiful Autumn day and the stadium was flooded with maroon and gold. Students and spectators cheered loudly for our team and there was a real energy in the air. Despite being behind by a few touchdowns, students continued cheering for our players and didn’t give up on them. It was great to see so many familiar faces attend the game. Elon is a special place because it fosters a real sense of community.