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Markiesha Ollison began a work-study job as an office assistant in the Dean of Students office the first day of freshman year. It was, she says, one of the most valuable learning experiences of her BU career.
“It was awesome,” says the 22-year-old native of Nashua, N.H., who was promoted to office manager last year. “It’s pretty cool being behind the scenes of so many things going on at BU.” Getting a chance to meet and talk with students from all over the world helped her hone her career goals as well. “It gave me an opportunity to think about my impact on the world and what I wanted to do.”
Ollison (CGS’12, SMG’14) had considered several majors—English, bilingual education, political science, international relations—before settling on marketing. Working in the dean’s office helped her discover that “I’m a person who likes people: I’m a relationship connoisseur, and that’s what marketing’s all about,” she says. “I was able to build a community and establish good relationships at BU and marketing allows me to do that with a wider audience.”
In addition to her four years in the dean’s office, Ollison served as a community advisor for Orientation, president of the College of General Studies Student Government, cochair of the BU Class Gift Committee, and a Warren Towers resident assistant. For her leadership skills and service, she was recently inducted into the Scarlet Key Society, the University’s activities honor society.
Reflecting on what she would miss most after graduation, Ollison says, “I’m going to miss the dean of students staff. They have done so much to help me figure out my way. I’m going to miss the constant community. BU is the first place that really felt like home outside my house.”
Ollison will begin a job next month with the marketing software firm Hubspot, in Cambridge, Mass. Despite the community she’s leaving behind, she says, she has no regrets.
“I have this saying with my friends: if you do it right, then you’re ready when it’s over,” she says. “And I’m ready for the next thing.”