Tammy Jelinek, ’05, ’08 (UIU Madison Center)
Change is inevitable, and during her childhood Tammy Jelinek experienced change constantly. She was born in Omaha, Nebraska and lived “all over the western United States.” Looking back, Tammy remembers being in different schools every year until 10th grade. During the summers, she hopped in the 18-wheeler with her grandparents. When asked where she grew up, she replies, “On the road.” Many people might see these circumstances as negative, but Tammy looks back and values the education she gained through her experiences.
Tammy has an adventurous spirit, enjoys travelling and being outdoors. She and her husband Jim keep a “bucket list” of all the places they would like to travel (Switzerland, Ireland and Germany are examples of what’s on that list). A place on the lake and their motorcycle serve them well for short adventures near their home in Edgerton, Wisconsin. They also have horses and a miniature donkey. When not travelling or taking in the recreational opportunities, Tammy works at Wells Fargo as a business relationship manager and assistant vice president, serving all business banking needs for her clients. She accepted the position shortly after completing her MBA. Tammy is also involved with her community and serves the Madison Center through her representation on the UIU Madison MBA Advisory Committee.
Tammy attended Upper Iowa University’s Madison Center and completed her bachelor’s degree in business with a minor in psychology. She immediately jumped into the MBA program, and now holds her MBA with an emphasis in organizational development. I asked why she chose UIU – “Location, Location, Location,” was her initial answer. ”But on a more serious note, UIU was located conveniently and I didn’t have to drive downtown after working all day. The class sizes were small and the instruction was excellent. In some classes, I had professors from the UW system teaching at UIU as adjuncts. I also wanted to go to school with other people in a similar situation to my own. Being in class with other working adults is a lot different than being in class with traditionally-aged college students. I felt I had a lot in common with my classmates and we learned from each other and our experiences in the real world. The accelerated class format fit well with my learning style, and UIU was a face-to-face education. I didn’t want an online program, especially for my MBA.”
A bit of inspiration…
Completing her degree while working full time was no minor undertaking. She credits her husband and refers to him as “the awesomest husband ever.” She said if it weren’t for his willingness to take on all of the household chores and be her cheerleader, she could never have done it. Even after knowing the difficulties and commitment it takes, Jim will be meeting with the UIU center staff in Madison to enroll in a public administration or safety program because Tammy has inspired him to do it. Tammy’s brother is also exploring UIU’s online business program after attending the commencement ceremony in Fayette with Tammy in 2008.
“Education has always been very important to me. I’m very happy that my experience of earning my degrees has been an example for other people in my family. I’m very proud to have reached my educational goals,” she said. Looking ahead, Tammy would like to become more involved with the UIU center in Madison, and eventually she may want to teach there. ”I want to help other people get an education – I’m willing to be that cheerleader or resource person – whatever they need to keep working toward their degree.”
“I believe in my UIU education. I would put my MBA degree up against any other university, and I believe that my degree (and my overall experience) from UIU meets or exceeds the quality of education from other universities.”
“Thank you Tammy for being so willing to share your time and story with me. I enjoyed the opportunity to get to know you and I look forward to meeting in Madison. It is truly inspirational to hear alumni stories of success. Go Peacocks!” hmj
Do you know a UIU Peacock with a story? Nominate them! Email email@example.com or leave a comment!
So, my entry title might make me sound philosophical, but in reality, I’m your average small town girl who moved from rural northern Michigan to rural northeastern Iowa three years ago. After spending some time at a school a bit south of Fayette, the opportunity to join Upper Iowa University was too good to let pass. So here I sit, in my second floor office in the Advancement and Alumni Center on the UIU Fayette campus with two new windows and countless new opportunities.
My business is all about people. Meeting people, learning about people, sharing with people, connecting people, educating people and helping people. You are one of those people. I do hope that this is the last post that I write about me. I just don’t like talking much about myself. I’m looking forward to introducing you to the people that are UIU. Together we will learn about our Upper Iowa University family and connect with each other to continue to achieve great things individually and collectively.
Nominate someone you would like to have profiled – an alumnus, faculty member, person in the history of UIU, a coach, an athlete – you tell me – who would you like to know more about?
I hope to see you through my window soon so I can have the opportunity to learn from you and about you!
See you soon!