A passion for the outdoors first drew Amanda Gresens ’08 (Communication) to SUNY New Paltz as an undergraduate. Now, as a member of the Alumni Advisory Council and through her job as a communications associate at Mohonk Preserve, her passion for the local community and nature keep her involved both on and off campus.
“I love SUNY New Paltz and this area for so many reasons,” said Gresens. “The town, the community, the mountains, the communication department, all of it.”
Gresen’s connection to the College has endured. She currently serves as an adjunct faculty member in the Communication department. She often reflects on the education that allowed her the freedom to pursue her interests.
“New Paltz treated me like an individual, not a set of numbers,” said Gresens. “It offered me a quality education and allowed me to explore my interests. It was also near the mountains. I’d be lying if I didn’t mention the draw of the outdoors.”
Exploring the world’s natural landscape will always be a pastime for Gresens, who recently completed in a 2,000-kilometer bicycle tour around Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden. It was a trip she took with her husband and one that illustrates her commitment to both nature and physical health. Locally, she is a licensed Zumba instructor and teaches two classes a week at the Gardiner Library. Through her work at the Mohonk Preserve, she’s able to keep close to the natural scenery she so loves.
Gresen hopes to continue to explore her close ties to the College through her involvement with the Alumni Advisory Council and she’s helping organize an Alumni Weekend & Reunion event on Oct. 4 at Mohonk Preserve.
In an effort to attract young alumni, she hopes to let former students know the many ways they can give back to the campus that gave them so much.
“You may leave New Paltz, but New Paltz never leaves you. It’s important to keep in touch,” she said. “Current students and recent alumni are the future of the campus and the alumni association.”