Leadership Spotlight: Gillian Perry

December 12, 2017

Each month WISA will showcase individuals on the WISA Leadership Team to allow members to get to know the women in executive positions in both a personal and professional capacity.

 This spotlight will focus on Gillian Perry, the Social Media Content Development Co-Chair. Gillian works full time as the Assistant Director of Campus Life Arts & Programs at UNC Wilmington.

Who has been the most influential in the development of your career? Why?

I've been lucky enough to have a lot of really great supervisors and mentors in my short time in the field. Linda Wardhammar, Joe Hayes, J. Scott Derrick, and the entire ACUI Central Office staff have helped shape me into the professional that I am today. But Stefanie Norris, my mentor (and now my supervisor!) has by far been the most influential in helping me grow as a person and as a Student Affairs professional. She's a phenomenal role model in many ways, and the work she does inspires me to continue to serve students in impactful ways.

When you wake up in the morning, and you're mentally preparing yourself for another day at work, what excites you the most?

The conversations I know I'll have with my students that day. They're magical and so full of life, and it's incredible to see what they're making happen on campus. I feel privileged to work with them every day.

What is your long-term career goal? At what point will you feel like you've "made it," so-to-speak?

Right now, my long-term career goal is to be the director of a student center. I'd also really like to begin pursuing my Ed.D. in the next few years.

What advice would you give to someone aspiring to move into a position similar to yours?

Take on new opportunities when they're presented to you! A new challenge helps prepare you for the next step, and that next step may come when you're least expecting it. If you're collecting meaningful experiences along the way (and doing great work with those experiences), you'll be ready for whatever comes along next in your career.

Why did you choose to enter the world of Student Affairs?

I was on the executive board for our programming board, and on a retreat, I talked to my mentor about how she ended up with her job. It was pretty much a done deal from that point forward - I couldn't imagine doing anything else.

We hope you've enjoyed getting to know more about Gillian Perry! If you have a question for Gillian regarding anything she mentioned above or her role on the WISA Leadership Team, please contact her directly at [email protected]

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