Hometown: Dyersburg, TN
Academic Major at Rhodes: Music
Rhodes Graduation Year: 2007
Current Home: Memphis, Tennessee
Current Profession: West Tennessee Regions at Work Coordinator
What was your major at Rhodes, and what have you been up to since your time here?
I graduated with a Music major on May 12, 2007, and immediately started working at Regions Bank on May 29--I just had my four-year service anniversary. I started as a Management Trainee for the first year, and then got promoted to an Assistant Branch Manager position. I was promoted again after five months to our Memphis Headquarters Office, and again six months later to the position I have now, which is the West Tennessee Regions at Work Coordinator. Essentially, I work with large corporations to offer their employees banking products as a benefit of their employment. It’s an interesting combination of sales, marketing, program development, and event coordinating.
Sounds very enterprising.
Yes, my territory covers all of West Tennessee, DeSoto County, and Crittendon County, so sometimes I even travel to Dyersburg, my hometown. We have 86 branches in this region, so I stay pretty busy.
So you have stayed in the Mid-south.
Yes, I live on Mud Island. Outside of work I am the vice president of the Rhodes Masters Singers Chorale, and I also sing for Independent Presbyterian Church. I’m involved in Rhodes Alumni events, Chi Omega Alumni events, and I’m the secretary for my homeowners’ association. I stay pretty busy, but I still make it to the gym at Rhodes three or four times a week. And of course, spend lots of time with friends and family!
That is quite a full plate! Do you mind if I ask you about a few favorites of your experience at Rhodes? Favorite Class? Professor? Life lesson?
Well, I would say all of the music theory classes. I had five, and really, all of those are topnotch. This is so hard to choose! I enjoyed the classes I had at British Studies, and also Personality Psychology and History of the American South.
Could you name a favorite professor?
Wow. This is hard; it’s tough to mention one or two without mentioning several. I’ll name three, though. Carole Blankenship, my vocal performance instructor; Courtenay Harter for music theory; and Tim Sharp, who led Rhodes Singers and taught conducting.
If you could list one defining experience at Rhodes, what would it be?
My trips abroad. I went with the Rhodes Singers to England, and also completed a Maymester in Paris and the British Studies program back-to-back. I was in Europe for three months during that summer. The Rhodes Singers England trip—that may be one of the most memorable life experiences I will ever get to do. We sang in eight cathedrals throughout southern England, but we didn’t just perform concerts; we led actual services. We were a part of evensong services in the almost thousand-year-old choir lofts. It was a very unique trip.
It sounds fantastic. Could you speak to how these Rhodes experiences translated into your life after college or to a lifelong impact you attribute to your time here?
I’d say my liberal arts education augmented my passion for learning. Even though I took a job completely different from my major, upon entering post-college life and the workforce, I came equipped to learn any set of skills and bring to the table a variety of subject matter that I had studied—to apply it with a different perspective, feeling confident to go forward, adapt, and continue to learn.