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Home » Leadership » Q&A: Mandy Hedstrom, AOII Alumna and Educational Leadership Consultant

Q&A: Mandy Hedstrom, AOII Alumna and Educational Leadership Consultant

Mandy 5Mandy1 

What year did you graduate/become an alum of AOII? What was your degree?

  • I graduated in Spring 2013 with a degree in Cell Biology & Neuroscience.

What is an “Educational Leadership Consultant” in simple terms?

AOPi ELC's for 2103-2014

AOPi ELC’s for 2103-2014

  • An Educational Leadership Consultant (ELC) is an international representative of Alpha Omicron Pi who serves as an organization development consultant for Chapters across the nation and Canada. As an ELC, I assessed group effectiveness and recommended strategic improvement plans, and provided training and assistance in recruitment and overall Chapter management.

Why did you apply for the job?

  • Although there are many reasons that I applied for the job, the main reason is that I wanted to be able to give back to the organization that has done so much for me and shaped me into the woman I have become today. I wanted to share the knowledge that I had gained with other sisters to help enhance their membership experience, and help make it the best that it can be.
Mandy 4

Spance Mountain at Disneyland

What was your favorite part of the job?

  • My favorite part of the job was being able to travel and meet sisters from all over! Each Chapter that I visited may have been in a different region or had a different background, but ultimately, we all share the same values. It was truly inspiring to know that no matter how far from home I went, I still had a home wherever my sisters were.

Share some experience you had/places you traveled/etc.

  • During my time as an ELC, I traveled to 21 different AOII Chapters in 19 different states and Canada, for a total of over 35,000 miles in 9 months.  My first semester of being an ELC, I had the pleasure of traveling in the South and along the East coast, which being a Montana native was a new experience! A few of the experiences that stand out to be would be:
  1. Helping to colonize a brand new Chapter at Sam Houston State University. I was able to help recruit
    Colony Members from Sam Houston State University (Mandy in Green)

    Colony Members from Sam Houston State University (Mandy in Green)

    the women to build a new Chapter from the ground up and help start them off the right foot towards becoming an AOII Chapter.

  2. Assisting with our Purdue Chapter’s first recruitment since being reinstalled as a Chapter.  I have never witnessed a recruitment as large as the one I saw at Purdue University. Purdue has 21 Panhellenic organizations and over 1,500 potential new members go through formal recruitment.  It was a really awesome experience to help out with a recruitment so different from the one at Montana State University.
  3. Being a resident consultant for our new Chapter at the University of Washington. We recolonized our UW Chapter, and I was able to reside in Seattle for the majority of Spring semester to help the Chapter with everything from day to day operations, to helping the officers better understand their roles, to helping with their recruitment plans.  It was great to be able to be in one place for weeks at a time to help build stronger relationships with the women I was working with. I also had the opportunity to live in the Chapter house with the women!

What motivated you to do this job?

  • Originally what motivated me was to be able to give back AOII, but what motivated me to continue
    Bid Day at South Eastern Louisiana University

    Bid Day at South Eastern Louisiana University

    the job everyday was the women that I encountered. The women that I had the pleasure of meeting were so eager and willing to learn everything that they could about AOII. This motivated me to give me best every day, because while that may have been my 20th Chapters visit, it was going to be their only consultant visit for the year and they still deserved my best.

What are you doing now?

  • I just started a job this month at Montana State University as an Admissions Representative, while also getting my Masters in Public Health.

Will you stay involved with AOII?

  • Absolutely! I have now learned that AOII is truly for a lifetime, not just for four years.  This organization is so much a part of me, that I cannot imagine my life without it. I am now an active member of our AOII Alumnae Chapter in Bozeman, and will also be serving as Communications Adviser for our AOII Chapter here at MSU.

What does being in a sorority mean to you?

  • Being in sorority is truly a life-changing experience. It means having someone there every step of
    AO-Pied in the  Face Philanthropy Event

    AO-Pied in the Face Philanthropy Event

    the way to encourage you to be your best, and helping bring you up when you fall. My sorority experience provided me with numerous opportunities for personal growth, leadership experience, service opportunities, professional development, and alumnae connections, but most importantly it has given me countless unforgettable memories and the best friends that I person can ask for.  I cannot begin to describe everything that AOII has done for me, and I am thankful every day that I was brave enough to give sorority life a chance, because my life has never been the same since joining AOII.

Other Comments:

  • If I had to describe my ELC experience in one word, it would be irreplaceable. When I accepted my bid to AOII less than 5 years ago, I could have never imagined what was to come in the years to follow. I would have never imagined that I would have the opportunity to travel the country and lead young women on their own AOII journey. My experience as an ELC was unlike any other, where I not only had the opportunity to meet the most incredible women, but I also learned a lot about myself along the way.
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