A Wise Choice

A Wise Choice


MOUNT OLIVE – Chad Wise, a first generation college student at the University of Mount Olive, grew up in Charlotte, NC.  His parents, Ronnie and Dana Wise, moved the family to Mount Olive during his junior year of high school. After graduating, Wise attended other institutions in both North Carolina and Florida.  However, he never felt like he found the right fit. Then in January 2013, Wise transferred to the University of Mount Olive.


“I had briefly attended other colleges,” Wise said, “but I never felt that the faculty and staff were invested in me personally. However, at the University of Mount Olive everyone went out of their way to be there for me. From the Admissions staff to the professors in my classes, everyone was available to make sure that I was successful.”


In the two years that Wise has attended UMO he has become heavily involved in many campus organizations. The experiences he has gained both inside and outside the classroom have transformed who he is and what he hopes to become.


“Soon after I became a student at UMO, the Admissions Office approached me about becoming a Tour Guide to show visiting students and their families around campus,” Wise shared.  “Being a Tour Guide enabled me to share all of the things I love about the University with others. I was able to tell potential students why their education at UMO would be one of the best experiences of their lives.”


Working as a Tour Guide, Wise quickly learned about different opportunities at the institution. By the end of his first semester, he had applied and was accepted as a University Ambassador.


“Becoming an Ambassador has been one of the best, most meaningful decisions I have ever made,” Wise stated.  “I have built lasting relationships with many people, including Dr. and Mrs. Philip P. Kerstetter, our University President and First Lady.”


As an Ambassador Wise has also participated in on-campus events, traveled out of state, and more.


“I have traveled with the Ambassadors to Disney and to Philadelphia,” Wise said.  “I have also attended various events on campus where I have represented the school to those who are newly acquainted with us. One of the things I like most about being an Ambassador is the opportunity to show others what the University represents in the community.”


Now in his senior year, Wise is participating in an internship within the University’s Office of Institutional Advancement.


Wise commented about the experience, “Through the internship I have learned that the Office of Institutional Advancement is responsible for developing understanding and support of the institution among its various students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, and friends. The Office covers a wide range of areas including fund development, public relations, grant writing, church support, planned giving, and alumni relations.” Wise said the internship has given him the experience he needs to begin a career ahead of the curve.


After graduating from UMO in May, Wise hopes to take the knowledge he has gained through his degree and the experiences he has had during his internship to begin his own career in Institutional Advancement.


“The people at the University of Mount Olive have always been invested in my education,” he said, “I have learned that one of the advantages of private education, at least at UMO, is that the classes are smaller, and the professors have time to be more invested in me. I am more than a number, I am a person. Through Institutional Advancement I would like to help other students share that same experience. My education has meant so much to me, and I want to give other people the same advantages that UMO has given me.”


The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The University, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Research Triangle Park, Washington, Jacksonville, and in Smithfield at Johnston Community College.  For more information, visit old.umo.edu.