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Student-trustee: ‘An unforgettable journey’

Athletic training major Alyson Stolz ’15 of Oxford, Mass., has immersed herself in student government – not only on the campus, but beyond. In addition to serving as the student-trustee on MCLA’s Board of Trustees for the past two years, she recently was elected as the secretary of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education’s Student Advisory Council.

Alyson StolzIn her position as the secretary for the state council, Stolz helps to organize events such as State House Day and Advocacy Day. In addition to taking the minutes of each of the Council’s meetings, she represents the MCLA campus to the Commonwealth, and is a voice on the leadership team to the advisor and the Board of Higher Education.

Stolz enjoyed her first year as student-trustee on the MCLA Board so much that she decided to throw her hat in for a second term. “I was actually on my way back from a trustee meeting in Worcester when I got the word that I won (again). I could not drive fast enough back to campus. It has been an unforgettable journey!”

Highlights of her “unbelievable” two terms include the opening of the new Feigenbaum Center for Science and Innovation, as well as the search for a new college president as MCLA bids farewell to President Mary K. Grant, who will assume the position of chancellor for the University of North Carolina, Ashville, in January 2015.

As the Board’s student-trustee, Stolz serves as the liaison between the MCLA Board of Trustees and MCLA’s Student Government Association (SGA).

Throughout her college career, Stolz’s other leadership roles have included orientation leader, peer advisor, president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), secretary of the Statewide Advisory Council, athletic training peer mentor, North Adams youth basketball coach, and MCLA sports broadcaster.

“Each of these positions has rounded out my MCLA career and made me a better student leader and community member,” she said.

With the ultimate goal of becoming a physician’s assistant and specializing in orthopedics, Stolz has completed more than 1,000 hours of hands-on clinical experience with athletic trainers, physician’s assistants, sports medicine physicians and physical therapists – all as an MCLA undergraduate.

“I have experience in numerous clinical settings, such as local high schools, neighboring colleges, physician’s offices and emergency departments,” she said. “This hands-on approach has given me the confidence to independently evaluate and treat patients while developing my own athletic training philosophy.”

MCLA, she said, is full of endless opportunities.

“Each position has taught me something valuable and has helped me create lifelong friendships and mentorships. There are so many ways for students to get involved,” Stolz said.

Alyson Stolz“I would definitely recommend MCLA to prospective students,” she continued. “MCLA has been my home away from home, and the people I have met here – from friends to mentors – will leave an everlasting impression on me.

“I love MCLA because you can be you, and you can be good at being you. Anything you want to accomplish, you can, and there is always a helping hand to make it happen.”

Stolz advises prospective students to “go out and get involved, take risks, have fun, and make these four years unforgettable. Do not be afraid to ask for help! There are so many people that want you to succeed.”

She added, “I have had an unbelievable education.”