Alumni Business - Desarae Saffold
Owner | Just be you Fashion & Official Desarae Blog
2017 | Applied Health Sciences with a Pre-Public Health concentration; Minors in Psychology and Health Communication
Why did you decide to attend UW-Parkside?
I decided to attend UW-Parkside because it was close to home and affordable. I am from Racine, WI (Horlick High Alum) and I currently reside in Memphis, TN. I enjoy the small-town vibes as I am an introvert and love the feeling of a warm community. I graduated in December 2017. I majored in Applied Health Sciences with a Pre-Public Health concentration, and I also had minors in Psychology and Health Communication. Special shout out to Professor Theresa Castor!
Favorite UW-Parkside memory?
My favorite memory is spending time with my Parkside Family. These were the group of friends that were there for me even beyond college. They have become my soundboard, my D9 Greek family, my home away from home. I love each and every one of them and I am so glad we were able to become like family to one another. Get you one!
How did your UW-Parkside experience impact your professional or personal life?
My education at UW-Parkside prepared me with many skills I needed to run my business. This happened before I attended college, being a part of Parkside's Pre-College Program in 2012. These skills consisted of working in the various departments on campus like the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA), Advising & Career Center, Campus Activities & Engagement, and joining clubs like Black Student Union, Pre-Health Club, Student Nurses at Parkside (SNAP), and Habitat for Humanity to give me confidence and grow my administrative skills. I have been able to network and connect with so many professors, staff, students, friends and outside people that they have become a lifetime community.
Professional and Personal Insights
How have you been involved with UW-Parkside post-graduation?
Upon graduation, I accepted the position to work at the University as a Program Associate for the TRiO Student Support Services (SSS) Office for two years. I also volunteered every semester for graduation selling roses and even was offered the opportunity to sit on a hiring panel for the Advising Center & Career Advisor job position.
Did you receive scholarships for any schooling at any point? If so, can you share why that scholarship was important or what your scholarship made possible for you?
Yes! UW-Parkside's very own Martin Luther King Essay Award 2012, Damascus 290 Lodge Scholarship, the Community Women's Club scholarship, and more. These scholarships made it easier for me to pay for things that seemed unreachable - purchasing books, supplies, and even meals - as I was a first-generation and low-income student. Thank you!
Who has had the biggest influence on your life or your career and why?
Damian Evans ‘96 and April Puryear ‘06 from OMSA have had the biggest influence in my life pertaining to my career. They were there for me before I attended college as a part of the summer program for health interest students in 2012. After feeling welcomed and secure in my decision to attend, OMSA became my second home. I was employed with many on-campus jobs as well as attended many campus events sponsored by OMSA that helped mold me into the woman I am today. These two are heaven-sent angels that were sent from God himself to see me through my undergraduate career. I couldn't have asked for anyone better. I truly appreciate them.
Advice for current UW-Parkside students who want to be entrepreneurs?
My advice to students is there are going to be people watching you to see whether you fail or succeed, and I say, define your own meaning of being successful. Use as many resources that the campus provides you, and find your Parkside Family: like-minded individuals who want to see you win. You only have one life to live, so don't be afraid to take risks. You are the only person that can get in the way of who you want to be in life. Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask for help!