Jamie Czech

Human Resource Management Major

"I think that the best way to describe my experience here is bittersweet. Every day in Indiana has not been perfect and we are all conflicted with "the grass is greener on the other side" syndrome from time to time, but as I have reflected on my time here at IUP, I have realized that this is exactly where I was supposed to be for the last four years. I have learned more about life, myself, and the road ahead because of the experiences IUP has granted me. I will be proud to call myself an alumna."

I grew up in Butler, Pa., and attended Knoch High School in Saxonburg, Pa. When I began looking at where I wanted to go to college, I was extremely overwhelmed. I cannot even remember how many schools I applied to and how much time I spent searching.

At the time, I had a boyfriend who went to IUP. He suggested I add IUP to my list. I spent almost every weekend visiting him and some friends. As I continued to apply to a long list of schools, I was undoubtedly falling in love with IUP. It was beautiful, felt like home and I was comfortable with it. I made the decision to come to IUP.

During my time at IUP, I have been very involved with my sorority, Delta Zeta (DZ). I joined in the Spring of 2011, which was a time in my life characterized by change and uncertainty, but whose freshman year does not feel that way? As I was becoming accustomed to being a student at IUP, I explored many different extracurricular activities from Residence Hall Council to Phi Beta Lambda to Society for Human Resource Management to the Hawk Rock to Phi Eta Sigma. I have tried it all and I learned the hard way that I was going to have to pick quality over quantity as well as not be on the executive board of every club I was in.

Being in a sorority on this campus has taught me so many things, including discipline, time management, and how to deal with different personalities. Something that DZ showed me that I desperately needed was to lighten up and enjoy my college years; I was the girl who constantly took life way too seriously. When I joined, I would have laughed if someone would have told me that I would be president one day.

Last fall I was elected president after serving as treasurer on the executive board the year prior. I was responsible for the actions and functions of 52 very different women. I learned a lot about mediation, compromise, listening, discipline, rewards, mentoring, and leadership. I learned how to use consistent enforcement to increase member participation and how an open-door policy, no matter how much of a hassle it can be, is the only practical way to understand the culture of the chapter in order to implement a proper strategy for the future.

To say that the experience was turbulent and difficult would be an understatement, but it was honestly one of the best real-world management experiences I could have had in college.