Alyssa is a junior from Mobile, AL majoring in Exercise Science with a minor in Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies. She is highly involved on Auburn’s campus. She has served as the Delta Academy Chair for Kappa Upsilon Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., a member of the Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy Club, the Executive Vice President of Black Student Union, and a Student Recruiter.
Why did you come to Auburn?
In first grade my school held an Iron Bowl canned food drive. I wasn’t sure what team to pull for, so I asked my mom and she said Auburn. I’ve been hooked ever since, despite my dad being an Alabama fan. I also participated in Minority Preview Day and War Eagle Day where I feel in love with the hospitality Auburn had to offer. I actually switched my major on a leap of faith after discussing the School of Kinesiology with the College of Education at War Eagle Day.
How did you get involved with Black Student Union?
Freshmen Year was a tough transition for me. I left Camp War Eagle very anxious about the school year ahead. Coming from a very diverse high school, it was hard adjusting the Auburn, whose demographic was quite foreign to me. I attended one BSU meeting and heard about freshmen committee applications opening. Soon after, I made FLP and realized I could not attend BSU every Monday, but they allowed to me turn in an application to freshmen committee anyway. I happened to make it to the organization meetings and met some of my best friends on campus there. I was strongly considering not coming to back to Auburn second semester, yet something about the inclusive atmosphere and leadership style of BSU kept me here.
What does it mean to you to work with BSU?
Working with BSU allows me to give back to my University by actively working to fix inclusivity problems that Auburn needs to address. BSU gives me a chance to make the change in Auburn that I saw as a freshman. It is the worst feeling, to be alone and know your family and best friends are nowhere near. BSU allows me to create a safe space where people of all races, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientations, political attachments, etc. can feel free to share their beliefs and thoughts on issues that are hard to facilitate on campus other wise.
What is your favorite event that BSU puts on?
Jazz and Poetry is one of my absolute favorite events BSU put on. Our Activities committee does an awesome job hosting this fun event, where students from all over campus come to perform music, poetry, etc. It is such as nice break from some of the heavy issues BSU usually covers. It’s a night to simply get all dressed up and have a little bit of sophisticated fun.
What is your favorite line of the Auburn Creed and why?
“I believe in a sound mind, in a sound body and a spirit that is not afraid…” This is one of my favorite lines in the creed because college can be a challenging a time and I must say, the past two years of my life have tested me beyond what I thought was emotionally bearable. Yet, this line of the creed reminds me to try my best, to stay calm and keep pushing, because as Auburn men and women, we possess a spirit that is not afraid. To me, this means we will not accept defeat and we will face challenges head on, despite unforeseen hardships.
What are your plans after graduation?
After graduation I plan to attend Physical Therapy school to obtain a doctorate in Physical therapy. After graduate school, I plan to work my first two years in a developing nation providing rehabilitation.
I am passionate about equality and diversity in many areas of study from higher education to the medical field. My major goal is to offer low cost rehabilitation in low income and urban areas. Beginning regionally here in Alabama, and then expanding not only nationally, but also internationally, is my most ambitious philanthropic goal.
Written by Hayley Wright
Last modified: 10/04/2016