By the time her 16-year Illinois adventure was over, Shondra Clay had herself three degrees in health-related fields, six years’ experience in research data analysis, umpteen professors to be thankful for and one husband.
Her list of most impactful Illini is a lengthy one.
“To name a few,” she says, “I’d be remiss not to mention Dr. Reginald Alston, Dr. Flavia Andrade, Dr. Susan Farner, Dr. Carla McCowan, Carol Firkins and Dr. Jerry Ogbudimkpa, also known as Dr. Jerry O.
“They have had a profound effect on my time at U of I, both personally and professionally. I wouldn’t be where I am today” — CEO of her own consulting shop and an assistant professor at Northern Illinois University — “without their individual contributions to my life and my success.
“Albeit I didn’t realize it at the time — in undergrad — my friend and now-husband, Alan Clay, who is also a two-time alum of the university, had a profound effect on my time in Champaign.
“His continued support and encouragement went a long ways. I guess that’s why I married him .”