“Lead from any seat”
What happens when you get involved at PC? You learn how to make a difference. Just ask Erin Dhand ’04.
Erin respected PC’s strong academic reputation before she’d even set one foot on campus. Once here, she loved that she could pull up a chair and participate every day.
“No class was too big for group discussion,” she said, “and professors wanted to know their students on a personal level and see them succeed.”
PC classes offered Erin a well-rounded education that helped her brainstorm herself into her present career.
“Strong writing skills, critical thinking, and creative thinking were required in all of my classes, not just in the English department,” she said. “Our Econ exams were written. You had to understand the economic theory to understand the question, and then write your answer and explain your reasoning.”
Combining Business and English
Along the way, as she struggled to understand some of those economic theories, she struck up a friendship with her professor.
“I went on to babysit Professor Lipford’s kids,” she said with a laugh. “I spent so much time in his office trying to understand economics that we struck up a friendship.”
She fell in love with her English classes from day one of her freshman year. But after adding a business minor, she wondered how she could connect the two.
Soon, a career in PR was born.
“Professors at PC helped me see the bigger picture, helped me connect to whatever I was studying, and I soon learned that what I was studying in English could carry over to other classes,” Erin said. “This helped me think about things in new ways as part of my coursework. That translated into my career, and I took those skills and made them into something new.”
Prepared for the Real World
Today she’s public relations manager of corporate communications and community affairs for the South Carolina Ports Authority. It’s a big job and one she loves.
“I’m fortunate to work for the SC Ports Authority, which plays a significant role in our state’s economy and supports the livelihoods of more than 187,000 South Carolinians. Beyond the Port’s role in everyday life, it attracts new industry and brings jobs and economic activity to our local region.”
In this way, she has met one of her life goals: to be part of an organization that makes a positive impact in people’s lives.
Being a Blue Hose
What kind of people does Erin emulate?
People who embrace the “lead from any seat” philosophy, like her PC professors who wanted her to succeed and her fellow classmates at PC.
In other words, Blue Hose.
“These are people, who in any role, have the ability to bring about positive change and make an impact in an organization. They serve as role models for all. Those people are so refreshing. We all know who they are. They bring life and fun to the workplace.”
In many ways, these people who inspire Erin today reflect the values and lessons she and our alumni learned at PC. Work hard, but have fun.
Want to find out how you can get involved at PC? Our Get Involved page lists the many opportunities waiting for you.