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Vince Ward

Extracurricular activities: President of Russian Club

Q: How did you choose your major?
A: I started college planning to be a pre-med chemistry major. I was absolutely sure that was going to be my path in life. I ended up taking two gap years between my freshman and sophomore year to serve as a missionary in Russia, and when I returned I knew I didn’t want to be on the med school track. I’m not sure exactly when I changed my mind, but after spending those two years in a completely different culture, I knew I wanted to work with people and leverage my problem-solving, entrepreneurial and leadership skills. I felt like business school checked all of the boxes and fit my life goals.

Q: Why are intercultural skills valuable in the workplace today?
A: No matter what career path we choose, working with diverse people will be required. Whether it’s age, gender, ethnicity, country of origin, language or personality type, being able to engage with others to accomplish a goals effectively is critical and those who have skills working with diverse people will be ahead of the game. Wake Forest gives students lots of opportunities to be engaged in team-based projects. The opportunity to work with students who all are different from me has been a wonderful chance to learn and develop these skills.

Q: What was your most interesting class at Wake Forest and why?
A: I have so many to choose from because they are all so interesting! If I had to pick one, I would say my first-year seminar in film studies. I am a big movie buff to begin with and it was fascinating to learn about different ways the director generates emotions in the audience.

Q: What is your favorite Wake Forest tradition?
A: Rolling the Quad after a big win. I still remember the night we beat Duke in basketball. It took more than a week to clean up.

Q: Did you have a favorite extracurricular activity?
A: I really have enjoyed being president of the Russian club. The people I have met and the friendships that I have generated are by far my most valuable takeaway from Wake Forest.

Q: What is your best advice for freshmen?
A: Take advantage of your resources. Get to know your professors. They are invested in your success and want you to do well. Take advantage of study abroad opportunities, the office of personal and career development, and the Wake Forest network. If I could do it over again I would definitely do a better job of making use of everything Wake provides. Wake Forest really has given us all the things we need to succeed; it’s up to us to use them.