Ashley Harwood ’18 serves as assistant director of alumni engagement at The University of Olivet. Prior to serving the College full time, Ashley was active on campus as a biology student. She developed a deep connection to the OC staff in student roles like academic enrollment specialist, events worker, library assistant and gift and data management specialist. After graduation, it was only natural for Ashley to remain on campus. Now, her number one goal is to uphold a warm and welcoming campus family for OC alumni to remain engaged with long past graduation.
What brought you to OC and why do you love OC?
I came to OC because I was looking for a smaller classroom size. I transferred here from a university and The University of Olivet provided just the change that I needed — it allowed me to excel in the classroom. I love OC because it has given me my home away from home. The small environment makes all relationships with faculty and staff more personal, and I think that is very essential at such a big step in our lives.
What is your favorite memory from your time at OC?
My favorite memory at OC is watching the The University of Olivet football team become the MIAA Champions two years in a row.
Where does your passion for working with alumni stem from?
My passion for working with alumni stems from the great experience that I was given at The University of Olivet. I had such a wonderful time as a student that I want to continue to provide a great experience for other alumni even after graduation.
What’s the average day in your role or some of the unique things you are responsible for?
My days are very busy but they are never the same. I am in control of the alumni engagement Facebook page that I manage every day. I also help with the preparation that leads up to the alumni events that we host almost weekly. At least one day each week I am usually helping host an alumni event. These events are hosted around the state, including in Grand Rapids, Battle Creek and Detroit. The alumni events are something that I really love about my role because they give me the opportunity to interact with many different The University of Olivet alumni.
Why do you encourage students to attend OC?
I encourage students to attend OC because this place is truly one of a kind. I can’t think of another college that cares about their students more tha The University of Olivet. My professors knew me on a personal level and I know that is something uncommon at other colleges.
What advice do you share with students or alumni?
My advice to students is to make the most of your time in college — it will be over in a blink of an eye! My advice to alumni is to never forget that The University of Olivet will always be your home.
What do you look forward to in your role?
I am very excited about the 2019 lineup of events. There are some special, large events that are going to be tons of fun, like the baseball games and Detroit River Cruise. I can’t wait to see everyone who attends.
What is an interesting or little-known fact about yourself?
During my sophomore year of college I moved to Florida and worked at Disney World.
Connect with OC and Ashley at one of the many upcoming alumni events this year or by contacting email@example.com. Learn more about The University of Olivet by contacting the Office of Admissions at 800.456.7189 or firstname.lastname@example.org.