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Students often graduate college and never look back. Micah Wimmer, however, who will soon be a triple Arizona State University alumnus, knows what it’s like to struggle as a student, an experience he intends to change for current ASU students.
Having seen ASU from both undergraduate and graduate perspectives, receiving a bachelor's degree and PhD in chemistry from the School of Molecular Sciences and soon an MBA from the W. P. Carey School of Business, Wimmer plans to share his wisdom and experience inside and outside the classroom.
Now a chemistry instructor, he hopes to use his diverse exposure to life on campus by uniting existing communities and inspiring progress across the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the university at large.
“Working professionally at ASU offers a chance for course development and other changes,” said Wimmer. “Problems I had while I was an undergrad, I now get to fix by being on the other side of it. I have a chance to influence change to make it the best experience for the students.”
Wimmer’s involvement in the chemistry program trained him to become an independent thinker and researcher and prepared him to work in a team environment, skills that make him an asset to the Emerging Leaders program in the college.
Part of the Dean’s Council at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Emerging Leaders are a group of inspired alumni coming together to improve the ASU community.
“I think university and community should be well-integrated,” said Wimmer. “We should be the knowledge center for the local area, and the Emerging Leaders are actively trying to marry community and academia to improve the college.”
Wimmer became interested in the program when he noticed how much its members care about the college and improving the experience for current and future students.
“Seeing how much everyone cares about the school they came from was really motivating,” said Wimmer. “It’s enlightening to see people at such a high level of administration caring about listening to outside input and incorporating changes to make the school better.”
Wimmer and the other Emerging Leaders are currently coming up with new ideas and programs to integrate the community and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The desire of bringing together academic and outside communities is a passion of Wimmer’s.
“I am hoping to be a community leader,” said Wimmer. “I want to make an impact on the community and work to make academia not only better, but help the transition from academia into the business world."
Wimmer hopes to unite graduating students and businesses, as he recognizes the generational gap creating a disconnect between the two groups.
“There are a lot of people entering the workforce straight out of academia without the skill sets needed to succeed in the business world,” said Wimmer. “I’m working to develop training programs for students on what business expectations are, and for business leaders to teach that the new workforce of millennials is really motivated.”
The combination of academic training from his years as an undergraduate and PhD student, and the business skills gained from his MBA will prepare Wimmer to serve as a channel connecting the two platforms.
As he finishes his MBA, Wimmer continues to juggle multiple projects toward his vision for a future of unity between the university, its students and professional communities.
“My default is to do bigger, greater things,” said Wimmer. “And I’m hoping to make a difference at ASU.”