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Winter Break has officially come and gone. Wait a minute? Weren’t finals like 2 weeks ago? *sigh…* Well, it is now 2017. The year for incredible possibilities. The reason why I say that is because, as I have hinted at before, I am working on a project for potentially several  Fortune 500 Companies. Time will tell. My excitement is through the room right now! That and the exciting classes that I am taking, and last but not least, my tireless effort and contributions to Enactus as I serve as President (2.5 years running)! Until next time guys, stay classy!

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Where do I start with this post – Most Influential Professor. Even though I’m still a Junior and haven’t graduated from Fontbonne yet, it would be difficult for me to pick a professor that has influenced me to: Learn More. Be More. IF I had to choose as of this moment, I would have to say Professor Mark Alexander. I feel like this professor does not receive enough credit. Yes, he was a professor of mine at first, but that all changed when he asked me a question (during freshman year) that changed my College Experience and Life for the better, “Why are you not a part of Enactus?” Not knowing how to respond, I agreed to attend that week’s meeting. And the rest was history! 

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Even though I’ve known him for only three years, he has gone above and beyond what a typical professor does/should do. Speaking from personal experience, he wears many hats (Professor, Faculty Advisor, Mentor, soon to be Ph.D recipient, & many others). He treats his students as if they were not only students but also as if they were his work colleagues and friends! He constantly wants his students to improve themselves. And let me tell you, I’ve improved myself and have done things that I did not think I could have done without his guidance (represented Fontbonne at a National Level – TWICE)!!! Not only is he the Faculty Advisor for Fontbonne Enactus (which I am the President of), he has many valuable connections! If it was not for him, I would not have joined the Regional Business Council and had Kevin Demoff (COO/EVP of Football Operations) of the former St. Louis Rams, now Los Angeles Rams; along with several other Top-Level Executives from various other companies (some Fortune 500 Companies) as contacts that are one tap away from my PHONE!!! Above all of that, Professor Mark Alexander has his own Scholarship fund that aids certain students (inner-city students) here at Fontbonne!!! Seriously, Professor Mark Alexander is the true definition of MVP (Most Valuable Professor). Until next time guys, stay classy!

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Inauguration Week is here! There has been so much discussion, planning, and hype about this week since the end of last spring semester. Fontbonne has a new president who started this year: Dr. Mike Pressimone. In celebration of his beginning at Fontbonne, the week of November 10-15 has been dedicated to welcoming events.

Through my involvement in Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK), Student Government Association (SGA), and Fontbonne Activities Board (FAB) I have helped plan three events for Inauguration Week. ODK is hosting Last Lecture, which is an annual speaker series. Dr. Sommer, who has been a longtime professor at Fontbonne, is delivering a speech. Then, there is a nice dessert reception to follow. SGA is hosting the Fall Festival, in which all the student organizations across campus run various game and craft booths. Finally, FAB is ending the week with a formal Inauguration Ball. This is not like a traditional student school dance held on campus. Faculty, staff, students, alumni, and anyone in the Fontbonne community are invited. Also, it is held at the Science Center. I am so excited to see everyone dressed up and having a fun, fancy evening together. Dr. Pressimone’s entire family will be there as well (which includes 12 kids!).

Stay tuned as the week unfolds. I’ll come back and post pictures from various Inauguration Week events.

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I was lucky to meet Dr. Pressimone at the international students dinner on September 4th. As I came near the Wydown House, I noticed how everything was set up to make this dinner a welcoming experience. The flags in the entryway representing the countries, the tables in the front porch and the decorations inside the house created an inviting atmosphere.

I was one of the first students to arrive there, which was intimidating at first. Then I met one of Dr. Pressimone’s daughters, Maddie. She was in the living room of the house playing, when she saw me she came to me and gave me an Easter egg sticker. Although a small gesture, the manner in which she did it made me feel more at home.

Then I met Dr. Pressimone. He approached me with a smile on his face and extended his hand to great me. When we started talking he asked about me: how I was, where I was from, and he made sure we established a connection. Dr. Pressimone and I are relatively new at Fontbonne, I have been here since January and he has been here since July. But the most interesting fact is that one of his daughters is from Guayaquil-Ecuador, which is exactly where I come from. Realizing what we have in common made meeting Dr. Pressimone an engaging experience, which is why I would like to encourage Fontbonne students to meet him.

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.