When one steps into the Maryville College Student Involvement office, they will typically notice a number of things: the large roll of banner paper, the scent of poster markers, drawers full of various decorations and usually a handful of students sitting at the table and planning the next student event. However, walk through the main office and there is a smaller room in the back. This is the office of the new student activities coordinator, Alison Fox.
Her desk is covered with a number of papers, her window sill is adorned with various personal mementos and there are typically supplies for an upcoming event stashed in the corner of the small office. Fox is a young woman with a pleasant demeanor. She has a friendly smile and a certain energetic tone to her voice. From the moment she begins to speak, she has to raise her voice slightly to be heard over the chatter of students out in the main office.
It is easy to tell from her accent that Fox is not from around here. The new student activities coordinator is from Newburgh, Indiana. She attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. Fox says that she enjoys living in the South because of how friendly everyone is.
“When I am in Kroger here, people do not run me over with their carts,” Fox said with a smile. Perhaps southern hospitality is not a myth. Fox’s position ties into many different areas of campus, but one of the major components of her position is that she is the advisor of the Student Programming Board.
She said that her favorite part about her new job is getting to work so closely with many students. “Everybody comes in and sees me and talks to me sometimes just about their day,” Fox said. “Just getting to know the students and learn about their lives is my favorite part of this position.”
Before she came here, she was a graduate student at SIU.She worked in the university programming office as a graduate assistant, and has had many years of experience in the area of student programming. Fox believes that student programming is important on campus.
“It engages students,” Fox said. “Especially here with Maryville College being so academically driven, it is nice being able to provide quality programs to students. They can come see a comedian, go to the homecoming dance and just take a break from their studies. That is a major part of being a college student.”
One of Fox’s major goals for this first year is to increase awareness of the Student Programming Board and their events. “The students who are involved know about SPB, but commuters and students who fly under the radar just do not know who we are,” said Fox. “I want to increase knowledge about Student Programming Board and what we do. I want people to know that our events are fun and free to students.”
Through increasing awareness, Fox hopes to raise attendance at SPB events. The other side of Fox’s job is that she is the resident director of Davis Hall. One can see her every day walking her two dogs in front of the freshman residence hall. Maura is a mixed breed, while Téa is a miniature Australian Sheppard.
“Sometimes, since my job is split, I have a hard time turning one side off and the other on,” Fox said. “My challenge is finding the medium where I can be both. I do love being a resident director because it is fun to learn about my girls and get to know them better. I just enjoy the bonds that I have built with my residents.” Fox said that her favorite thing about MC so far is her walk to work in the morning.
“I come to work around 8:30-ish, so I get to see students heading to class,” Fox said. “It’s really peaceful. It’s a short, quiet walk that just starts my morning off perfectly.” Like many others, Fox has fallen in love with MC’s campus. Fox is a valuable addition to the staff here at Maryville College.
She enjoys her job and loves getting to know MC’s students on a more personal level. Fox is clearly having no problem getting settled here on campus, and MC now has one more personable staff member to boast about.