Yosemite: Kristen & Atticus Mabry ’11

We started planning this trip with my uncle (a Carolina Law graduate) over a year ago, and it exceeded all expectations. The views in Yosemite can’t be beat, and the experience is that of a lifetime! All together, we hiked over 55 miles, and ascended to over 8,600 feet at Half Dome. We also hiked up to the top of Yosemite Falls, Yosemite Point, Sentinel Dome, and Glacier Point. We ended up running into some Clemson grads and South Carolinians along our adventure and even a freshman starting this year…Go Tigers!

Our Story: We both met at Clemson while undergraduates in the Pre-Veterinary program. Now married, we split our time between Greenville, Greenwood, and Athens, GA. Kristen is a Veterinary Student at UGA and I am a Veterinarian.

Bahamas: Rider, Edwards, Clayton and Cannon families

These four couples all began their relationships while students at Clemson. We all live in Chapin, SC now and have 10 Tiger cubs between us. We like to tell them they owe their LIVES to Clemson…which they do!

Taylor Zeck ’00 Rider, Michael Rider ’98, Anna Corpening ’01 Edwards, James “Josh” Edwards ’01, Michelle Proveaux ’01 Clayton, Jason Clayton ’00, Tracy Dalpe ’98 Cannon and Clay Cannon ’98.

Peru: Audrey Stevens ’13

Audrey Stevens went to Peru with her friend Suzannah Feldman. It is her last hurrah before starting her medical residency. This picture is at the top of Huayna Picchu. Looking down at Machu Picchu.

Esko gift-in-kind enhances student experience

Clemson University student Mengmeng Zhao, a third-year doctoral student in packaging science from Tianjin, China, uses a computerized sample cutting table in the Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics that was funded by Esko Inc., Oct. 24, 2016.

Clemson University student Mengmeng Zhao, a third-year doctoral student in packaging science from Tianjin, China, uses a computerized sample cutting table in the Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics that was funded by Esko Inc., Oct. 24, 2016. (Photo by Ken Scar)

Clemson students will work with cutting-edge design equipment, software and tools for years to come, thanks to Esko, a global supplier of integrated solutions for the packaging, labels, sign and display industries.

The company has given Clemson’s Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics equipment, maintenance and software valued at $26,703,750 over a five-year period.

“Esko has been a great partner with the Sonoco Institute for nearly a decade, and this latest gift will be instrumental in Clemson’s ongoing efforts to remain at the leading edge of research into packaging technologies,” said President Clements. “Esko’s equipment and software allow our packaging design students to leave Clemson proficient in industry-standard tools and technologies.” The Sonoco Institute is the only university program in the country with a multidisciplinary approach to packaging as a core competency.

Esko has been a partner of the institute since 2008, and the curriculum is built around the company’s equipment and software. “Esko values the Clemson relationship largely because of the amount of value the printing and packaging industry places on Clemson as a resource for talent and innovation,” said Larry Moore, Esko’s vice president of partner programs in North America.

The partnership has greatly benefited Clemson students and consequently the manufacturing industry, said Chip Tonkin, director of the Sonoco Institute and Clemson’s graphic communications department chair. “Our Esko relationship is a world-class example of an industry-academic partnership that leverages real-world tools and relevant challenges to engage and inspire our students in ways that feed the talent pipeline that our entire manufacturing industry desperately needs,” said Tonkin.

Branding life’s moments: Melissa “Lisa” Holladay ’89

Clemson Alumna Lisa Holladay

As global brand leader and vice president for The Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, Lisa Holladay says her job isn’t to sell you a room, but to provide guests an experience. “The ‘Why?’ we exist as a company isn’t to sell hotel rooms or to sell beds, but it’s to create memories,” she said.

Landing at the Ritz-Carlton from Clemson wasn’t a straight line for Holladay. As an education major, Holladay had plans of entering the classroom. Even though she loved teaching high school seniors, student teaching revealed she didn’t want to move into the classroom. Next was graduate school at Georgetown University to pursue an English degree, but a study abroad program in England revealed to Holladay that she loved travel. Her path eventually led to a public relations firm in Washington, D.C., then to a non-profit. A half dozen jobs later she was in San Francisco and found her niche with Mercedes-Benz.

“I grew up there,” she said about staying with the company for over a decade. “I loved it. I knew I wanted to be passionate about something, but I didn’t know what it was. That’s when I went to work for Mercedes-Benz and did everything from PR to marketing to advertising.”

Her last move with Mercedes took her to New Jersey and New York where she was national manager for experiential marketing for Mercedes-Benz USA, and where she finally found her “Why?” — her love of brand management.

“My job is to make people fall so in love with our brands that they are loyal beyond reason,” she said.

When the opportunity came open from Marriott to interview for the Ritz-Carlton, Holladay said she studied like there was no tomorrow.

“It’s travel, food, wine, spa, luxury … I really, really wanted that job and thought, ‘They’re never going to hire me because I have no hospitality background,’” she said.

Being an outsider was her “in.” “They wanted to extend the brand as more than just a hotel company,” she said.

Now as a global brand leader for luxury brands, Holladay wants to have guests explore the city and the hotels, while providing relevant, contemporary luxury that aligns with core brand values.

“There’s a reason my two longest career stints have been with brands that have heritage,” she said. “I should have known when I was at Clemson that I was a brand person because even then I was enamored with the Tiger paw on everything, the football team running down the hill and the story of Clemson.”

— Julia Sellers