ABINGTON, Pa. — It’s difficult to imagine that Kyra Fripps was once considered reserved — even shy — when she first arrived at Penn State Abington. As she prepares to graduate on Dec. 19, a look back at her college career reveals a student who thrived in the classroom and blossomed through the myriad of activities in which she became involved.
“I definitely feel like I’ve become more confident, and my communications skills have improved. When I started college, I was really scared to even make a phone call. I didn't socialize much. I was shy and didn’t really talk. I decided to get involved in different organizations and break out of my shell,” she said.
It’s more like Fripps shattered her shell. She is a high-achieving student, participates in academic enrichment activities, serves as a student organization leader, and just completed a three-year stint working for the college’s Center for Career and Professional Development (CPD).
“I wanted experience in the business realm and to gain more connections so I started as an intern in CPD. I learned more about what the business world was like, and I attribute my success to those connections,” the accounting and business health services major said.
According to Tina Vance Knight, director of CPD, Fripps's personal and professional growth has been extraordinary.
“Kyra has served in many forward-facing roles, including being the face of many of our social media videos, serving on the Chancellor’s Search Committee, opening many of our virtual webinars and networking events, and representing CPD during countless class visits. Most importantly, she is always the first to raise her hand to help students with resume reviews, career advice, and guidance,” Vance Knight said.
“Kyra also expanded her skills set by changing roles several times, moving from an employer engagement assistant to peer career adviser to the lead on our social media and marketing team. She is always willing to take on new challenges, assist her peers, and help to move the CPD office forward,” she said.
Through Vance Knight’s recommendation, Fripps was selected for the prestigious role of student ambassador to the Chancellor's Search Committee as the college interviewed candidates for its leadership position earlier this year.
“I sat in on the interviews, answered questions, and helped develop questions and decide who moved on in the interview process,” Fripps said.