Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Seahawks Soar In Emerging Markets

Each year, technology seems to develop faster and faster, leaving those unfamiliar with its abilities in the dark and unable to catch up. It's good to know there are resources to help a company sort through the new tactics to find what's right for their business.

Communication Studies alumnus, Justin Queen '04, got involved with the UNCW radio station and was inspired by the new path it opened for him. Enjoying communications theory classes and media law, he also spied an opportunity and soon jumped on the wave of emerging technology referred to as web marketing. By the time he was a junior, Justin was contemplating starting his own business or a career in media sales. Intrigued by this rising media power, Justin decided to put his savings in the new industry of web marketing and launch Blu Zeus.

Within six years his company has developed a national and international client base, providing digital business solutions while specializing in web-based technologies. Getting to this point hasn't been easy- Justin started the business out of his home while teaching himself programming languages. He learned that in order to grow you need to work hard, and work smart. "You fight to get established and beat the odds, being underfunded, understanding how to manage people, but most importantly, what you're good at and what you're not. I've learned to do what I'm good at and hire the best people to do the rest."

Justin encourages alumni and current students while speaking at events during CSB Business Week, and working with the Entrepreneurship Center. Attending alumni functions has also led to client referrals, another reason he chooses to stay connected with UNCW.

Seahawks have been paving the way for our future all over the world. Find out about Lindsay Rowe '08 teaching in South Korea, Brad Knighton '06 playing for MLS with the Philadelphia Union and Ryan Crecelius '06 who owns his own real estate business that gives back to our community.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Alumni Volunteers Pave the Way

Ken and his daughter at the
Grand Slam Jam held in April.
The Cape Fear Area Alumni Chapter, which hosts events for more than 18,000 local alumni, is growing their programming, thanks to great volunteers and leadership. Serving as Chapter President, Ken Dieppa '09M, enjoys the opportunity to support UNCW and the community.

Receiving his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from USF and then attending military school while in the Naval Reserves, Ken was originally brought to Wilmington while working for Corning Optical Fiber. He chose the graduate program at the Cameron School of Business due to school rankings and because the accredited MBA program could fit his busy lifestyle. Now, as a Senior Services Project Manager with GE, he enjoys spending time with other alumni in the coastal town he calls home.

"The people at alumni events are great. They are very positive and the conversations are intellectual which produce a warm and inviting atmosphere." Ken desires to continue to build affinity networks between alumni and local businesses and is looking forward to making new connections at the Alumni After Work coming up this Thursday. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Seahawk Seeking Challenging Career Heads To South Korea

UNCW attracts students from all around the world. Many alumni also choose to live abroad after earning their degree. Making these geographic and cultural changes can be a challenge, but our Seahawks always overcome.

One alumna who is no stranger to change is Lindsay Rowe '08. After coming to UNCW in 2003 for a teaching degree, she decided to change course and seek out challenges in computer science, economics and then business. Lindsay attributes a large part of her success to the Cameron School of Business. "The degree to which they push their students was harder than any other field." The other facet of her college experience was Greek life. Lindsay recalls, "Sorority life pushed me to become more responsible for my actions and a role model for my peers".

Realizing that graduation was just around the corner, Lindsay became employed in finance, news journalism, human resources, and as a legal aide. After giving each position due effort, she realized these were not areas she wanted to pursue long-term.

Wanting to stretch her abilities even more, Lindsay researched the Peace Corps and teaching abroad. A one year contract, teaching 4-15 year olds and tutoring adults, in Seoul, South Korea was offered to Lindsay and she accepted. Overcoming the language barrier has been not quite as challenging as planning her lessons for the various ages of students. The students are very focused on secondary eduction and are under a lot of pressure, with few extracurricular activities offered.

Lindsay is looking forward to exploring new places and facing new challenges that allow her to grow. She misses strolling with her friends down Chancellor's walk, philanthropy events, study sessions, PT's burgers and fries, and Captain Bills volleyball. These memories, and the encouragement to stay driven, are what makes Lindsay grateful for attending UNCW.

Drive and ambition is evident in many of our alumni. Find out more about Brad Knighton, a goalkeeper who played hard to get into Major League Soccer, or Ryan Crecelius '06, an entrepreneur who started a realty company focused on Wilmington's future. During the next four weeks of the Seahawk Summer Feature, we'll showcase alumni who are working in television, traveling the world and more!

Monday, July 19, 2010

TEAL-OUT at the 2010 Durham Bulls Picnic!

On Thursday, August 12 join the Triangle Area Alumni Chapter for the Durham Bulls Picnic! Have a chance to mingle with guests from UNCW Athletics,
Men’s Basketball Coach - Buzz Peterson
Women’s Basketball Coach - Cynthia Cooper-Dyke
Baseball Coach - Mark Scalf
Athletic Director - Kelly Mehrtens
and get the scoop on the upcoming Seahawk Athletics season!
Tickets available until August 8
$15 adults, Kids 5yrs and under free
Includes full menu picnic, soda, beer and entry to game and party deck.
TEAL-out at the Durham Bulls Picnic for a FREE GIFT!
Each guest sporting their favorite UNCW apparel receives a free gift at the game!

Friday, July 16, 2010

First Seahawk To Reach MLS Ranks Stays Focused

Many kids dream of being a professional athlete. They work hard, focus, and sometimes it all works out. At age five, Brad Knighton '06 was into many sports, enjoying the competitive nature and team environment, but as he got older he knew soccer would be his future.

During the summer of 2003, Brad received a phone call from UNCW Soccer Coach, Aidan Heaney. During a visit to campus, the rising soccer star quickly realized that despite numerous college choices, he was destined to become a Seahawk. While playing for UNCW, Brad was named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-South Atlantic Region Second-Team after leading the Seahawks to their fourth consecutive trip to the CAA Tournament. He also earned First-Team All-CAA honors while setting a school record with a career-low 0.83 GAA in 2006-07 that ranked him third in the league. "The accolades that Brad received at UNCW were the result of his determination and hard work," said Coach Heaney. "I know he's always going to do what it takes."

The opportunity for Brad to realize his dream came in January 2006, when he became the first Seahawk to join Major League Soccer. Following in the footsteps of his mentor, Coach Heaney, Brad signed with the New England Revolution as the number 3 goalkeeper. Earning a spot on an MLS roster may have been a big undertaking, but Brad soon realized that his next challenge was to remain focused. "Coming into practice every single day and knowing [there are not many chances] to play is tough. It will take a toll on anyone. Being able to have that mental toughness and fight through it those first two years has made me a better person on and off the field."  Brad's determination and ability to always give 110% gave him the edge to beat out the number two goalie and get more action in the games. His high performance caught the attention of the Philadelphia Union, the 16th ranked team in the league, and he was picked up in this year's Expansion Draft.

Brad is currently living in Pennsylvania with his wife Britney, a 2007 UNCW nursing graduate, who works for Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children. They are expecting their first child in February.

Like Brad, UNCW alumni are reaching their goals and achieving success all over the world. Take a look at the last post on the Seahawk Summer Feature and learn about Ryan Crecelius '06, an entrepreneur who has his eyes on Wilmington's future.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Registration now open for Family & Alumni Weekend 2010!

This fall, alumni, parents and friends are invited to UNCW Family & Alumni Weekend. Held on October 15-17, the weekend will includes a ton of activities both on campus and around Wilmington. 

The Young Alumni Reunion is for the classes of 2000 through 2010 and is a party featuring live music from Machine Gun with dancing, hors d'oeuvres, wine and beer. Haven't seen the old Bookstore turned into the Burney Center yet? Well now's your chance to experience the inviting ballroom, set up like a local lounge, while you hang out with friends and reminisce about days at UNCW.  Have little ones? Complimentary childcare will be provided down the hall from the event!

The Golden Wing Society Reunion celebrates those who have been alumni for 50 or more years. The classes of 1947 through 1960 will enjoy brunch on Saturday in the Madeline Suites before boarding the trolley for a student guided tour on campus. This is a great opportunity to scope out the new buildings and hear what the Seahawks of today are doing on campus.

Honoring our alumni and incoming students who are making UNCW a family tradition is the purpose of the Legacy Pinning Ceremony held on Saturday afternoon. Alumni who have a child, grandchild or sibling currently attending UNCW will celebrate their family tradition and the bond that makes them all Seahawks.

Other weekend events include an Alumni & Parents Welcome Reception to kick things off on Friday night, Midnite Madness, kayak tours around Masonboro Island, tours of Screen Gems Studios and so much more! Space is limited at some events and tickets do sell out, so be sure to register early!

Monday, July 12, 2010

UNCW Alumni After Work- Summer Edition

Don't miss the next Alumni After Work on Thursday, July 29 from 5:30-7:30pm at Dockside. Enjoy drinks, complimentary appetizers and door prizes and you relax with friends on the water. Free Alumni Koozies will be given out at the event to each person who registers online by July 27!

Friday, July 9, 2010

UNCW Alumnus knows what it takes to Do Good

For many, starting their own venture, being their own boss and putting ideas out there for the world to see is a scary thing. While numerous UNCW alumni are entrepreneurs, we found out about a unique business concept, and the man behind it, that is sure to get attention in the Wilmington area.

Ryan Crecelius '06 completed his real estate courses while earning a criminal justice degree at UNCW. Utilizing his mentors, both at school and while employed with Coldwell Banker as a realtor, he picked apart the real estate market to find ways that it could do more for our community. A little over a year ago, Ryan used his experience, knowledge and understanding of peers to put his ideas in motion. Do Good Real Estate was born, a forward-thinking company that donates 20% of their commissions to local charities such as the Wilmington branch of Habitat for Humanity, the Surfrider Foundation, and any other cause that is near and dear to their clients heart.  Their mission of 'creating tomorrow's community' allows a seller or buyer the opportunity to make an impact in Wilmington's future and that's an idea that appeals to many.

Working with the new UNCW Entrepreneurship Center, Ryan enjoys staying in touch with UNCW and fellow alumni. His memories of professors and school days include the countless opportunities to get advice and counseling, regardless of whether it was school related or not. He appreciates the support he received from career services and how welcoming they were to his differing needs as a student and alumnus. Also an active member of the Young Brokers Council, Ryan helps to plan community events such as a Dunk Your Broker BBQ, which accommodated more than 400 people this past spring. We're so proud to have alumni like Ryan, working to make our community better for future generations.

Are you interested in finding out more about what our alumni are up to? Stay posted to see more highlights on alumni each week during our Seahawk Summer Feature!


Friday, July 2, 2010

Showcasing alumni on the Seahawk Summer Feature

UNCW has more than 55,000 alumni since the first graduating class of 1947. With its record setting enrollment of nearly 13,000 in 2009, UNCW continues to grow. Encompassing a wide area of study, UNCW offers bachelor’s degrees in 52 majors, 35 master’s degrees, a Ph.D. in marine biology and an Ed.D. in educational leadership and administration. Each one of our alumni come out of UNCW with their own experiences and goes on to lead lives of success in many different ways.

Over the next few weeks, the Alumni Blog will feature some of our alumni and the exciting ways they are making an impact in their communities, work places, with the next generation and around the world. Using their courses of study, mentoring from professors and networks of friends, they have built their lives around doing what they love. And we love them for it.

Each week will feature different alumni with a story to tell. Find a new connection with your fellow Seahawks and remember why you chose to get an education at our university on the coast.