A Place Where He Could Succeed
The University of Evansville has a reputation of offering students a quality education experience. The school does everything in its power to ensure that students live up to their potential. Through classes led by exceptional professors, clubs and organizations, and the sense of community the students bring to campus, students are well-prepared for the chance to become who they were meant to be.
Adam Anthony had ties in Evansville before he chose UE. He had lived here as a young child and had family and friends in the area. When it came time to find a college, he set his sights on big campuses, where he felt he needed to be. “I thought I wanted a big school, but the more I toured, the more I realized that a small campus was where I needed to be,” Adam explained.
UE had much to offer Adam before he even stepped on campus. As an Eagle Scout, he received a great Scout Scholarship, and the impressive study abroad opportunities helped seal the deal. “I could really hone in on my skills here,” Adam said. “I could develop strong relationships with the people and faculty at UE, which didn’t seem to be a possibility at other, bigger schools.” Already, he saw UE as a place where he could be successful.
Helping Him Every Step of the Way
UE is a small school, which is truly one of its strong attributes. “It’s pretty cool that UE is so accessible,” said Adam. “Staff and faculty members support the students here. Students should value that when they come here because they’ll take you places you never thought you could go.” Professors support their students and do a lot to show that they care.
There are many faculty members who have impacted Adam’s development, like Robert Shelby, PhD, visiting assistant professor of sociology. “He was the first person who challenged my beliefs, in my Race and Ethnicity course,” said Adam. “He helped me develop my thinking and hone in on why I thought this way.” Shelby didn’t just push Adam’s thinking in the classroom, but was also there to support him outside of class. When he was faced with a challenging final paper, Adam was able to meet with Shelby every day to discuss it. “I wanted it to be amazing, and he supported me the whole way,” Adam explained. “I didn’t expect that kind of relationship with him.” And this relationship went beyond that semester. “I can talk with him about anything,” he said. “I went in prepared to take a basic class, and I came through with a great mentor.”
LaNeeca Williams, diversity and equity officer, also had a positive impact on Adam’s UE experience. Their relationship started in the Black Student Union, when Williams became Adam’s advisor. “I worked with her as an intern, and she’s exposed me to so many leadership and networking opportunities,” said Adam. He was given a chance to share with faculty his suggestions and ideas for improvements on campus and in the community. “Meeting people and making these connections is how you develop a more well-rounded way of thinking,” Adam said. “She kept introducing me to people, and I loved meeting with people.”
When Adam joined the Model UN as a freshman, he met Wesley Milner, PhD, executive director of international programs, who would remain close with Adam through the International Bazaar and mentorship and partnership opportunities. “He kept me aware of our world,” said Adam. “He supported me and understood what I wanted in life and how I could get there.”
One of the benefits of UE education is the many opportunities to get involved with organizations around Evansville. During his time at UE, Adam has been a part of many local groups, like College Mentors for Kids, International Club, Student Christian Fellowship, and I Am Second. “The goal for this organization is to connect with people who don't know Christ,” explained Adam. “It’s about putting yourself second and putting service to people in need first.”
Adam was also involved with the Black Student Union on campus. “It was a haven for me,” he said. “They gave me leadership opportunities to make the campus aware of the issues and opportunities to connect with people who are different from you. We could outreach with other organizations and develop a network to show that we are a strong presence on campus.”
Living in Evansville had a sense of familiarity for Adam, whose family ties made moving here easier. “I had to get to know Evansville differently,” he said. “It’s smaller, more intimate, and you get to know people quicker, in a shorter amount of time.” A smaller town comes its own set of challenges, and what Adam found most difficult was finding something new to do. “If you stayed on campus, it could feel monotonous,” he admitted. “So I had to challenge myself to explore.”
Through excursions for class projects and personal explorations, Adam got to see the many sides of Evansville. “If you explore the different sides of Evansville, your years at UE will be significantly better.”
It’s All Part of Your Journey
“Sometimes, the best things in life happen when you’re not trying to control every aspect of it.” Adam’s advice for prospective students comes from experience. “I tried several times to study abroad, but it just never worked out,” he explained. “I was interviewing Erin Lewis and she talked about the ChangeLab program.” Lewis felt that Adam should try out for the program, but he was hesitant. After some encouragement, Adam applied.
“I got to go to Guatemala over spring break for one of the programs,” he said. “I got to go to a beautiful country, make friendships with others, and share this experience that only we know. I’m so glad I can graduate with that; I’m glad I had that conversation with [Lewis] that day.”
Adam had a hand in many different aspects of UE. He was a manager of the UE Women’s Basketball team, he was part of the Black Student Union, he was involved with Greek life, and took part in several service opportunities and great internships. “Don’t be afraid to step up to someone and talk with them,” he advised. “That’s how you get these opportunities. Networking is awesome.”
“Your journey is your journey,” Adam said. “You don’t have to explain yourself, as long as you know that the steps you’re taking will get you where you need to be.” He felt that, even if you step off your path, it’s all part of your journey. “Whatever you have a passion for, that’s going to be where you need to be.”