Adriana Vizcarrondo, a senior business management major with concentrations in general management and economics with a minor in international business, has been named “Student of the Block” for Block Four of the 2010-11 academic year.
The Student of the Block Award is presented each block by the Office of Student Affairs to recognize students for academic achievement, leadership on campus and contributions to the college community.
During her time at Tusculum, Vizcarrondo, a native of Anaco, Venezuela, has amassed a stellar resumé of achievements and as a member of the Pioneer Golf Team personifies the ideal student-athlete. She maintains a 3.66 grade point average, has been listed on the college’s Dean’s List and Athletics Director Honor Roll for the past four years and has been named a South Atlantic Conference Scholar All-American and to the National Golf Coaches Association Division II All-Scholar Team for the past three years.
Vizcarrondo has served as president of the Tusculum College Business Club and was a member of the Pioneer Student Athletic Advisory Council in 2009-10. She volunteers for the Gifts for Kids program at Landair Inc. and is a mentor at Chuckey-Doak High School.
Vizcarrondo was nominated for the award by Dr. Antonio Bos, professor of economics. “Adriana is a dedicated and capable student, as demonstrated by her high grade point average and honor roll membership,” Dr. Bos wrote in his nomination.
“Her international background and experience enrich the courses and the lives of fellow students,” he continued. “Her dedication, energy and positive attitude motivate, and probably without realizing, she becomes a leader and a role model in the classroom. She had a significant impact within the Business Administration department, given her participation and leadership in the Business Club.
“Most significantly, she personally and explicitly challenged me to break from conventional, stale, textbook-based teaching and, instead, she urged me to develop innovative teaching methods and assignments. … Her challenge re-energized my own approach to teaching and it allowed me to recall, very clearly, the purpose and the sheer joy of being a teacher.”
Vizcarrondo’s older sister, Mary Ann, is a 2010 graduate of Tusculum and was also a member of the golf team. To be close to her sister is one of the reasons that Vizcarrondo chose to attend Tusculum. She take prides in what she has been able to accomplish in college. “It has not been easy to be away from my family, but thanks to the staff, faculty and students at Tusculum College, the transition has been smooth and I have been able to accomplish my goals,” Vizcarrondo said.
Classroom experiences in her business courses are among what she counts among her favorite memories of her time at Tusculum. She particularly enjoyed business law and ethics, international business and international economics under her favorite professor, Dr. Bos, who is also her advisor and mentor. “His perspective on business has broadened my knowledge and helped me understand the difficulties of economics and business.”
“Dr. Michelle Freeman (associate professor of business administration) is also one of the nicest professors I’ve ever had and at the same time one of the most challenging,” Vizcarrondo continued.
Also having a great influence in her life have been Golf Coach Bob Dibble and Brandon Conner, director of freshman services and student success. “He (Coach Dibble) has been a person who I can count on no matter what situation I am in,” Vizcarrondo said. “I consider him my dad in the United States and Brandon has been a great influence in my life - he was my supervisor for my internship in the Office of Admission, is the leader of the church on campus I attend and is a great friend of mine who has helped me excel not only academically and pursue my career but also spiritually.”
Her dedication and hard work in the classroom is matched by her zeal for knowledge and greatness on the golf course. “I am honored to play a collegiate sport and be a part of the Tusculum College Golf Team,” she said. “The efforts I have put forth since a very young age are worth every single minute. If it wasn’t for my participation in this sport, I would have never gone to Tusculum. It has not only financially benefited me to play a collegiate sport, but it has also allowed me to meet a lot of great teammates and other golfers in the South Atlantic Conference. We are so blessed to play amazing golf courses all over the region, including one of the best golf resorts in the world, Kiawah Island.”
Vizcarrondo counts among her role models, her parents and her aunts and uncles, including her uncle Juan Ronderos, who works for the World Bank and influenced her decision to enter the business field.
With her intense work ethic and goal-setting, she has become a mentor and role model to many others in the Tusculum community. Her advice to other students in achieving her goals and dreams is “to get on task right away, don’t wait for someone else to take the first step for you” when in pursuit of a goal and also to strive to discover what it is “that you have a passion for … what you love. Life will be much easier when you do something you enjoy.”
At Tusculum, Vizcarrondo has built many relationships that she will cherish for the rest of her life. “My friends have been there for me not only for the good times, but also for the hard times, and the golf team has always been there for me,” she said. “It’s such a great feeling to have that sense of comfort that comes from knowing that I have people to be with me in the darkest times.”
Vizcarrondo will graduate from Tusculum in May. Her long term career goal is to pursue a master’s degree abroad in international business and help improve relations between countries and increase globalization.