Alice Wong dreamed of attending a small liberal arts college when she graduated from Carmel High School. Born and raised in Indiana of immigrant parents, she yearned for the experiences of college life. A bright, articulate, and excellent student, she had choices. Except that she didn't. To live on her own, away from home, Alice would have required significant assistance for her daily needs.
Before Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, social networking revolved around who you met in class, at the grocery store or any other place. "On-line" match ups didn't exist because "on-line" didn't—unless you lived in a setting that still had party-lines on your land line phone, which was hard wired to the phone company…
Sarah Zike (BA English, 2006: MS Adult Ed, 2011), business developer for one of the newest on-line social networking companies, CourseNetworking (http://www.thecn.com/), is perhaps ironically, the product of an earlier, non-electronic version of social networking.
"I used to think working in a funeral home would be a sad way to spend a life, but not anymore," reveals Emily Duncan. Since graduating from IUPUI with a bachelors' degree in English in 2007, Duncan's journey to her current position is filled with daring and adventure.
She was the office manager once before at the family-owned and -operated Aaron Ruben Nelson Mortuary in Zionsville, but decided to take time off to explore the world a bit.
While completing her undergraduate coursework at the University of Rome- La Sapienza in her native Italy, IUPUI alumna Elisa Lucchi-Riester had no intention of teaching. She was working towards a BA in Modern Languages: "I always knew I wanted to work with languages, because I loved them," she explains.
Jennifer Scorniaenchi is her name and achieving goals is her game. On and off the soccer field Scorniaenchi is a shining example of what a person can achieve once she puts her mind to it.
The Canadian native was recruited by IUPUI Coach Chris Johnson in 2003 while playing a soccer game here in the U.S.
When Rashid Owoyele dropped out of school and moved out of his home at the age of 16, life without a high school diploma was a challenge. He tried to proceed with his education through a correspondence program called American School. "I found it very difficult to teach myself algebra and physics so I never completed the program," says Owoyele.
On his MySpace page, Matt Markoff appears in a suit and tie nearly as often as he shows up in jeans and a baggie hooded sweatshirt. This is because Matt is a lawyer and he is also M-Eighty, a rapper. He works behind the stage and performs on it. With degrees in Political Science and Law, he combines the academic and creative, the artistic and practical, landing Matt where he is today.
Paula Granger waits for no one when it comes to following her passion for learning--and doing. A native of Lake Charles, Louisiana, Granger says she chose IUPUI because, "I knew the degree from Indiana University would be respected wherever I went." Granger, now a distinguished May 2008 School of Liberal Arts graduate, is taking her new role as alum in stride-no surprise considering how quickly she made her own niche at IUPUI.
When Andy Goodwin graduated from IUPUI in 2003 with a MA in Teaching Spanish, he soon found himself at Covenant Christian High School helping build a Spanish program from the bottom up. He recalls convincing students and parents that an immersion style learning environment could work. "Now Covenant alumni and their parents speak to future students about sticking with the program, which has taken a much better shape since its turbulent inception," he says.
"Both the Spanish and the Cuban culture were instilled in me from a very young age," Vanessa Clarkson recalls. Stemming first from her heritage-Clarkson's mother was Cuban-this connection to language and culture now shapes her career. As a member of the Santa Ana Police Department in California, the 2006 IUPUI graduate with a degree in Spanish puts her love of language to use on a daily basis.
Miriam C. Delgado arrived in the United States with her family from Cuba after the revolution that put Fidel Castro in power. While adapting to her new country, Delgado and her brother began to forget their own culture, including the Spanish language. "Sadly, forgetting one's native language happens too frequently when young children come to the USA from abroad," Delgado says.
"Living Generously" is this year's theme for the Spirit and Place Civic Festival managed by the Polis Center of the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI. It is also a good description of how Frank Owings, Jr. (BA 1971, English) and his wife, Patte, have spent their time since retiring from Service Supply Co., Inc. nearly a decade ago.