After half a decade of traveling around the world in the Marine Corps infantry, Alex Wulpi (B.A., communication, ‘18) came back home and enrolled at IPFW. His parents and brother, former IPFW students, encouraged him to enroll. Flash forward a few years, and now he is a communication graduate with a concentration in rhetoric public advocacy, a minor in public relations, and both internship and work experience.
Some of the qualities Alex acquired in the military also helped him succeed on campus. “Things like leadership, service, and discipline are real, tangible character traits to be utilized for the betterment of the community. I’ve brought this mentality with me to this campus for the last four years, and I plan on continuing into graduate school.”
Alex knows that student veterans also face unique challenges, including, “a disconnect between you and your peers, a stigma surrounding military veterans on college campuses, and the lifestyle adjustment” of returning to civilian life. The Office of Military Student Services and the Student Veterans Association helped him overcome these challenges. “One thing that’s certainly a hallmark of military service is that you learn to lean on other people when you need help and to be able to support others when they need to lean on you.”
Such relationships and networks were vital to Alex’s academic success: “95% of my education came from outside the classroom.” His extracurricular activities include working in the Chancellor’s Office, joining the Ambassadons, participating in The BIG Event, and becoming president of the Student Veterans Association. He has also represented the university at conferences in the United States and Poland.
Two College of Arts and Sciences staff members who have been very supportive are his advisors, Dr. Michelle Kearl (communication) and Marietta Frye, director of the Student Success Center. “Dr. Kearl has been an invaluable asset in my journey,” Alex says. “And Marietta has been a steady and reliable source of information, advice, and encouragement.”
#WhatsNext for Alex Wulpi? He was recently accepted into the Master of Public Administration program at Purdue Fort Wayne for fall 2018. We are certain he has a bright future as a leader on campus and in the community.