Spring 2009

Since her first year at Richmond, Mandy Friend has been deeply involved with the campus through various athletic and leadership roles. As a senior, she serves as the Vice President of Student Affairs for the Jepson School Student Government, President of the Student Athlete Advisory Council and captain of the women’s lacrosse team.

In May she will receive a bachelor’s degree in leadership studies, with a minor in business administration and Spanish.

Through her leadership experiences at Richmond, “I've recognized how vital it is to surround yourself with great people who have faith in you and have a similar vision,” she said.

Typical of Friend's approach, when she looked for her summer internship, she sought an opportunity that would allow her “to work with many facets of my community, including local businesses. In this way, I hope to gain an extensive and knowledgeable understanding while realizing the positive effects the local workforce system has on a community."

She landed at the Finger Lakes Workforce Investment Board (FLWIB). Its mission is improving the economic well being of job seekers and employers in the region by aligning human potential with opportunities in the workplace. She spent her summer working with economically disadvantaged 16-to-21-year olds in a program that provides training and work experience. She also worked withi at-risk youth in a competency-based development program in which she incorporated her leadership studies knowledge to design activities geared toward cohesion and education.

Her internship combined her business and leadership knowledge. Specifically, she managed the "Start Here for a High Tech Career" program that placed young adults in a seven-week internship focusing on career planning and preparation. The internship required “everything from marketing, planning, organizing tours and leading class discussion,” and the work demanded a variety of different skills and approaches. “In the end it was so gratifying to see a program from conception to their graduation,” she added.

As a dual citizen of Canada and the United States, Mandy qualified for the Canadian Women’s World Cup lacrosse team and will be traveling to San Diego in January for the final round. If she makes the final cut, she will be competing in the Women’s Lacrosse World Cup held in Prague from June 17 to 27, 2009. “My life has revolved around lacrosse since I was 10 and I can't imagine my life without it,” she said.

When not tackling the demands of a senior workload, lacrosse practices and several leadership positions, Mandy enjoys keeping up her competitive spirit by racing others in Sudoku.

After she completes her degree in May, she plans to return home to Canandaigua, N.Y., and find an opportunity for further leadership before ultimately heading off to graduate school.