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Archive for June, 2013

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Today is my final day working in Eastern Michigan University’s Office for Alumni Relations. It truly is hard to believe that six months have passed since I started here, and I am now among 150,000 others who call EMU their alma mater. However, I have graduated and am moving on to the next stage of my life. This next step includes starting off my professional career, and getting married to my best friend next week!

As excited as I am for all the new experiences I am about to have, I am also exiting one of the most exciting periods of my life. Eastern Michigan University has provided me with skills I will draw from always, and a large part of that learning was done while I worked in the Office for Alumni Relations. Please bear with me as I thank some very cool people.

Dan Mathis, the former Interim Executive Director for Alumni Relations, was the first person I met here, and I knew immediately I wanted to work for him. Thank you sir for helping me learn to be comfortable with my work. I could not have asked for a better boss/friend.

Alison, you have been amazing to work with. Thank you so much for showing me the ropes around here.  I think the e-Edge has never looked so good. P.S. You were right, the mango/avocado salad is delicious, and I will be sure to save some for my fiancé.

Will, you have the coolest full name of anyone I know. I had a great time playing soccer with you! (I will not mention our win/loss ratio) Thanks for answering my hundreds of questions.

Jovan, you win the coolest car in the office award. I will miss working with you. I am also so happy we got to work Alumni Awards together. My best thoughts/prayers for you man.

Lisa, Patti, Jessica, and Ann, you are all awesome, the alumni are in excellent hands! I look forward to seeing you all at upcoming events.

It is approaching 5:00 p.m., and I have goodbyes to say. EMU Young Alumni, you have been a joy to work with. Now that I am one of you, we will have to hang out some time.

Remember to follow us on Facebook or Twitter so we can stay in touch.

Gratefully,

Paul Martell

Alumni Programs Intern

Eastern Michigan University

– 2013 Graduate

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Proof that I did it!

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June, 2013

By Paul Martell

Nicole and Trish are EMU alumnae, sorority sisters, best friends, and fashion entrepreneurs. They recently opened the doors to their Southfield-based clothing store, Whink Clothing Boutique.

 

Nicole and Trish have known each other for 15 years. In 1998, both girls were attending Eastern Michigan University, and both girls decided to join the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. Though working toward different majors, Trish and Nicole had one passion in common: fashion. Little did they know, in the future, this shared interest would be the focus of an exciting joint venture.

While studying at EMU, Trish and Nicole were highly involved in Campus Fashion shows. ImageThey worked collaboratively to select models, garner clothing donations from local businesses, and approve outfits. During their involvement in Greek Life, community service became a top priority for them as well. Trish finished her undergrad in 2000, and then went to grad school. Nicole earned a bachelor’s degree in 2002. It would not be until several years later that these two would choose to start a business together.

Nearly ten years had passed, and it was time for Nicole and Trish to fulfill their passion. Trish says, “Once I got into my career, I realized I only wanted to follow my dream. I wanted to follow it more than anything else…One day I mentioned I was thinking about opening a boutique, and Nicole was thinking the same thing! We decided to do it together.”

After brainstorming and planning, they came up with Whink Clothing Boutique.  Whink is going to cater to, “Contemporary, trendy young ladies. The trendsetters who are looking for unique pieces.”

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The store is located at 29959 Northwestern Highway in Southfield, Michigan.

June 14 at 4:00 p.m. marked the grand opening event for Nicole and Trish. Together, they hosted the Whink Clothing Boutique ribbon cutting ceremony. Southfield’s mayor attended, as well as new customers, and local media. The day was a success, and featured hors d’oeuvres, giveaways, and of course, fashion. Trish and Nicole donated a portion of all proceeds raised at the ribbon cutting ceremony to Girls with Gifts, Inc. Girls with Gifts is a bi-coastal mentoring organization “inspired to inspire” young girls, ages 11-18, with aspirations in the arts and entertainment.

Nicole says, “We are so excited that we are a good team, our passion is coming together, and we are bringing it into existence.”

The boutique in Southfield is just the beginning according to Trish and Nicole. They hope to establish Whink as a household name, synonymous with fashion and charity. “We want to be associated with not just fashion, but with community also. Growing with Detroit is part of our brand.”

This exciting new business is being started by some of EMU’s own, and the University is proud of them. According to Trish, “I think our relationship starting there (EMU) really helped us to do this. We have a great respect for each other. Our drive is very similar. We truly believe we are going to be successful.”

If you would like to get “Whinked”, be sure to the store located in Southfield, Michigan.

For more information, or to get connected to Whink Clothing Boutique, just check them out on:

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM: @whinkboutique

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Paul Martell

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June, 2013

by Paul Martell 

Danny is the Head Baseball Coach for Bowling Green State University’s highly successful men’s team and combines lessons learned in the past with modern technique for the winning formula

 

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Danny Schmitz has been the Head Coach at BGSU for 23 years

“I like to play a little golf these days,” says Danny Schmitz. As time goes on, Danny likes to focus more and more on his wife, kids, and two dogs. However, his day job, as Head Coach of the Bowling Green Falcons baseball team, keeps him quite busy. Luckily for Danny, he is doing what he loves and is quite good at it. Under his guidance, the Falcons have won five regular-season conference championships, earned six MAC titles and much more. How does the most successful coach in Bowling Green history do it? Danny attributes his accomplishments to his excellent staff, family and experience. Eastern Michigan University was a large part of that experience, and he is a proud Alumnus of EMU to this day.

Danny was a talented and passionate baseball player from an early age. By the time he was in high school, he was being considered by a number of universities. EMU, Western, and Central were all in communication with him regarding their baseball programs.

“The bottom line is when I met the coaches from EMU, I knew without doubt it was the place for me,” says Danny.

Danny Schmitz quickly made a name for himself in EMU athletics. He played from 1974-1977, during this time EMU won two MAC titles, and was ranked third in the final Collegiate Baseball poll. He says, “I tell you those are four years I will take to the grave with me… I met some very special friends. I can’t say everyday was a rose garden, but it was great to have outstanding coaches and teammates.” Danny was also gathering coaching philosophy that he would later integrate into the way he develops his players at BGSU.

After 1977, he was drafted by the New York Yankees, and began the next phase of his baseball career. He played there for six years. Danny’s career would continue to evolve and change, always centering on baseball. The game took him to Korea and Taiwan. He would even play for the Mets and the Twins, and earn a World Series Ring. Eventually, the Hazel Park, MI native would return home to EMU as a coach. From 1987-1990, Danny helped the EMU baseball program grow.

One day, a position with Bowling Green State University opened up, and Danny decided to make the move. “Coach Oestrike made a call for me and got my foot in the door. Here we are 23 years later… It has been a wonderful experience.” says Danny.

Danny’s wide range of experiences and long history with baseball have made him the valuable coach he is today. The knowledge and skill he has certainly did not all come from one position, or one time in his life. However, EMU still holds a special place in his mind. Danny says, “Not a day goes by that I don’t think of Eastern Michigan. I use a lot of the experiences from EMU and I incorporate it all into my team. I am so thankful to EMU and Roger Coryell for making me a part of his staff.”

The future looks bright for Danny and the Bowling Green Falcons, their success is projected to continue. A life in the game, a wide set of experience, and a staff for which he is deeply grateful allows Danny to still have passion and some to spare for baseball.Image

” I love teaching these kids about the game, and more importantly, about the game of life.”

by Paul Martell

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