Welcome to the 2nd post of the HU Alumni Spotlight, a monthly series that aims to highlight the significant contributions of Hampton University alumni who continue to let their lives do the singing. This month we feature distinguished Hampton alumna Chrystal Gaither ’10.
First Name: Chrystal
Last Name: Gaither
Graduation Year: 2010
Class Name: QT7
Graduate School Programs and Graduating Year(s): Loyola Marymount University, Master of Arts in Education, May 2013
Current Employer: Teach For America
Current Occupation: Recruitment Manager
We asked Ms. Gaither a series of questions to gain insight into her unique leadership perspective. Her responses are below.
Why do you believe it is important for others to give back to Hampton?
Support from alumni plays an integral role in determining the future and continued growth of our beloved Hampton University. The money is used to help fund and improve innovative programs that expand the quality of education Hampton offers to its students. We are giving back to more than our school; we are helping the next generation of movers and shakers afford an education. Plus, the value of my degree increases as Hampton continues to maintain its prestigious title. Also, giving back is a great way to stay connected to our “Home by the Sea,” and show appreciation for the amazing learning experience college was for all Hamptonians.
What advice would you give to an incoming freshman on maximizing their Hampton experience?
Get involved and make sure you network. Pursue deep friendships, after college these people will become family. Spend time getting to know your professors, when you find one that you respect, ask them to be your mentor and stay in touch with them. Set academic expectations for yourself. Try to work out at least 2-3 times a week. Make sure you take advantage of internships, and study abroad at least a semester (try to take a foreign language all four years). Work hard + play hard, and never give up!
What campus organizations were you involved with?
I was fortunate to be involved in the Gamma Theta chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, the Greer Dawson Student Leadership Program, Rose Petals Mentoring Program, California Pre-Alumni Association, Student Government Association-AIDS Committee, College Against Cancer, and INROADS.
If you could describe Hampton University in three words, what would they be and why?
Good, Better, Best…. Whenever, I hear these words I think of Hampton University. That poem was on the front of my brochure, when I received my acceptance letter, Dr. Inman, made Pre College 2006 repeat it over and over. It is something that stuck with me throughout my Hampton experience; I even made my students memorize it. It really brings me to a place of nostalgia.
What is something most people don’t know about you?
I don’t know how to dance. I thought I would learn while attending Hampton, but I never mastered that skill. So, I mastered the two-step and sitting down while throwing my hand in the air.