Neumann hopes Greek system becomes healthier, stronger

Paige Siegel

Last spring, the Student Activities and Greek Life Office conducted interviews for the assistant director position. Students and faculty were given the opportunity to come in and listen to the candidates’ platforms and ask questions about their goals, intentions and plans if they were hired. Jessica Neumann stood out from them all. Neumann was hired and got right to business.

Neumann was looking for a community that focused on many different areas. She has a passion not only for the Greek community but also for women’s issues, equality and social justice. Neumann sees her title, assistant director of Student Activities and Greek Life, as a blend of many different subjects. It allows her to work with Greeks, and the other organizations on campus. Networking, showing students how they can use their resources and teaching them how to build a community are just some of things that Neumann’s job entails.

“We wanted someone who could come out and work extremely well with students and know how things should be done,” said Patrick Muenks, Delta Chi president. “The Washburn Greek system works differently than other campuses. We wanted to make sure there was someone willing to listen to what we wanted, with a focus on Greeks.”

Neumann’s main focus while she is at Washburn is to help undergraduates become strong leaders and evolve successfully. Although Neumann has not come across any big challenges in her position quite yet, she wants to make it known that the Greek chapters have her support and that she hopes they become healthier and stronger as time goes on.

“Jessica has a very open mind. You can just walk into her office and talk to her,” said Muenks. “She makes me feel like she actually cares about the person, not just the organization.”

Getting to know the students better, building community, and helping students realize that they can stand on their own are just some of the goals Neumann has while she is here.

Neumann is working on balancing her personal life and her job, so she can show students how to not get burnt out.

“Anybody as a new person at Washburn University has the opportunity to direct learning and their passion for their profession,” said Neumann. “I think that it is not something you get at every institution. I am lucky to not have the cookie cutter position. We are allowed to go outside of lines and create the position that we want.”