The end of the academic year can be more rewarding in less obvious ways such as overcoming final exams. For Thorpe Residence Hall President Megan Leigh Ellinger, the end of the year came with being awarded the Central Michigan University (CMU) 2011 Resident Hall President of the Year.
The Rockford CMU sophomore was selected by the Residence Hall Assembly (RHA), which consisted of 22 dormitories campus-wide.
“I was really shocked,” Elllinger said. “There are a lot of people who have done great things, but the fact that they chose me is really an honor.”
Ellinger said her role as Thorpe Hall President included attending RHA and Hall Council meetings every week, E-Board meetings and working one-on-one with Thorpe Residence Hall Director Ryan Phillips on various dorm activities throughout the year. Activities included social, civic and volunteer work both on and off the campus.
“Since the first day I met Megan, I have been nothing but impressed by her work ethic,” Phillips said. “She was very organized and delegated responsibilities and hold accountable other Hall Council Members to help ensure Thorpe Hall activities were always successful by including the majority of students in the dorm.”
Under her leadership this year, Ellinger helped Thorpe Hall receive the 5 Star Community award from RHA, Phillips said.
Resident Assistant Amy Mitchell said, “Megan was nominated because she has been extremely dedicated to Thorpe Hall. She took her role as Hall President very seriously and did everything that she could to make sure that Thorpe Hall and CMU was a great place to be.”
“Being Thorpe Hall President opened a lot of doors to me for other leadership opportunities,” Ellinger said. “I feel like it really has given me an ‘in” to create a difference both on and off campus for various organizations.”
On campus, in addition to Thorpe Hall President, Ellinger has worked as a leadership guide for two years, helping prospective students, parents and new freshmen get acquainted to CMU. She was also the special events coordinator for CMU’s 2011 Homecoming.
Although Ellinger is stepping down as president for next year and moving off campus, she said she is going to continue to stay involved with CMU activities and community events.
“I know it sounds cheesy, but I love CMU,” Ellinger said. “I love being a part of something bigger than me and being an influence on the things I am involved with, whether on or off campus.” Despite all her involvement, Ellinger, a 2009 honor student from Rockford High School, has been able to carry on all her duties, responsibilities, community involvement and intramural sports while maintaining a 3.82 grade point average, making the President Honor Roll.
Phillips said he is grateful to have worked with Ellinger over the past year. “In all my years working in Residence Life and with Hall Councils, I can honestly say that Megan is the best Hall Council President I have ever had the opportunity to work with.”