Gentry, Ark native, Danielle Spencer-Rogers wasn’t sure what she would get when she came to Ozarks her freshman year. She quickly fell in love with the campus and community, though. Because of the close-knit feeling on campus and the ability to make connections with everyone on campus, she became comfortable calling Ozarks her second home.
That feeling of community is Danielle’s favorite thing about campus, saying “everywhere I go on campus, I either see someone I know or I meet someone new. I really enjoy meeting new people, but I also like being able to know the students that I am going to school with, Ozarks is a good in-between for me.”
While Danielle has changed her major a few times, she has always felt strongly about helping people. That desire has been at the core of her educational choices. Throughout these changes, her advisor and professors have continued to support her goals. “All of the faculty and staff at Ozarks want to see you succeed and I have not met one person who doesn’t want you to reach your goals, even fellow students.”
During her time at UofO, Danielle has become well-known as someone who is always willing to help when needed and having a great attitude. EmmaLee Morrow, Marketing and Enrollment Operations Manager and Danielle’s supervisor as an Ozarks Ambassador said “Danielle is an amazing student ambassador. She is a great communicator and a good listener, and can easily tailor her personal experiences and/or her friends’ experiences to provide prospective students and their families with valuable information on academics and campus life at Ozarks, based on their specific interests. She is a joy to work with, and we are happy to have her as a member of our Student Ambassador Program.”
Danielle is in her sophomore year at UofO, and plans to continue her education after she graduates, aiming for a master’s degree in Health Science. Her favorite classes though, are her math classes. She recognizes that is probably odd, but said that “Anytime I don’t take a math class, I stress a little bit more… I think it is just the reassurance that if I am struggling in my other classes, then at least I have the one math class that I know I can do well in.”
When asked how COVID-19 has impacted her education thus far, Danielle says it initially had a significant impact because many of the classes she was taking at that time were hands-on or required specialized software. But, despite these difficulties, she notes that her professors were “trying to figure out how we would do projects without proper material” and making adjustments so that students could still be successful in classes.
Now, over a year and half out from when campus initially had to change to online instruction, Danielle feels that Ozarks is providing her and her classmates with the support and community that she fell in love with in the first place, and is striving to meet students where they are at. According to her, “Ozarks is supporting students as much as they can during the pandemic. There are certain students who cannot return to campus due to COVID, so the online classes help them still get their education while at home. They have accommodated well to all the different changes.”
Danielle says to students who are thinking about coming Ozarks, you will get “a genuine connection with professors, people on campus who will know you by name, and seeing your friends every day, then Ozarks is a great fit for you.”