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Olivia Dowler

Olivia Dowler

Why did you choose WVU?

West Virginia University truly is a university with limitless opportunities. Since the moment I set foot on campus as a sophomore attending the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Seminar, I knew this was where I belonged. No college I toured gave me the same feeling of welcome and warmth in my heart like WVU did. As a first-generation student, I was especially pressured to go out of state; however, I feel that as an R1 research institution, as a land grant school, as a community of diverse students, West Virginia University has so much more to offer than is realized. Additionally, I love the opportunities to give back to the people of our state and beyond. The “Go-First” mentality among Mountaineers is something that cannot be found anywhere else.

What is your favorite Mountaineer memory?

My favorite Mountaineer memory was campaigning for the Student Government Association with the Build campaign. I met so many people with a like-minded ambition. Everyone around me was so kind and pushed me to be the best I could be. Additionally, I was able to dig deeper into how I could help to make this University great. This was also my first in-person event on campus amongst the pandemic.

Why did you want to become a PSA?

I wanted to become a PSA to have greater ability to give back to the community around me and to strengthen my public speaking skills, as well as meeting more amazing Mountaineers!

What did you learn from the PSA experience?

I could go on for hours about everything I have learned, but I will shorten it to three main lessons.The first is to never go into situations with preconceived notions- you would be surprised to realize just how much you have in common with other people. The second is to dream big, even if it is something others would see as “too ambitious. The last is to keep in mind that you are capable of anything–and when you are approaching a situation that makes you question this, remember one thing: Act brave, and you will be brave.