Nash Trumbly reporter
The Pittsburg State University Wilkinson Alumni Center hosted a reception to honor the recipient of this year’s Dr. Ralph J. Thomas Distinguished Service Award, Lindsey Young. Young graduated with her Bachelor’s of Business Administration in 2005 as well as her MBA in 2009, and has played a vital role in the Alumni community, helping to raise hundreds of thousands for the university.
The Distinguished Service Award was first presented in 1991 and renamed after the late Dr. Ralf J. Thomas, the first recipient and an Alumni Association member for over 20 years. Candidates are typically those who have rendered significant volunteer service to Pittsburg State University, often helping to fundraise or mentor current students.
Jon Bartlow, PSU’s Director of Alumni and Constituent Relations, elaborates on how the university chooses its annual recipient.
“Faculty, staff, and Alumni are able to nominate people throughout the year, and we form a pool of people who have been nominated. Our committee, made up of members of the Alumni Association as well as our campus faculty and staff gets together in the winter and decides who they think is the best candidate for the award this year,” said Bartlow.
Lindsey Young is the daughter of two PSU alumni herself. Her late mother, Ellen Shipman Carson was a professor in the nursing program for several years. Growing up in Girard, Young was surrounded by the PSU Alumni community and eventually chose to attend herself.
“Pitt State was big enough that I got to meet a lot of new people and get away from home but also small enough so it was easy to get around and everyone was super friendly… you can easily get involved with anything you want,” said Young.
Young works as the Chief Difference Maker at NU Marketing, a marketing consulting firm working with architects, engineers, and construction companies, helping them form strategic marketing strategies.
Young and her husband Aaron, a graduate from the School of Construction, currently reside in Northwest Arkansas, where they help organize and attend Gorilla Gatherings in the area. She is also a member of the Pittsburg State Alumni Association Board of Directors, where she helps shape the future of Alumni Relations for the university.
Young volunteers as a student mentor for PSU’s Women@Work, an organization within the Kelce College of Business focusing on mentoring female students majoring in business.
She has also played a vital role in planning the annual PSU Construction Alumni Golf Tournament in Wichita, which raises money to give scholarships to students within the School of Construction. Young has helped raise over $300,000 for the event since 2010.
“I think Lindsey is really the epitome of what we would love all of our alumni to be. She stays involved, she attends events, she mentors students, she helps raise money, she does everything. Ultimately being an Alumni is about making the best environment we can for our future students, and she checks all of those boxes,” said Bartlow.
Young helps mentor students across departments at Pitt State and is an advocate for student involvement.
“Network and build relationships, meet as many people as you can, it takes a village to make things happen and start your career… I may have been the one to receive this award tonight but there was a lot of other people who helped me get here, so build those relationships and they will help you personally and professionally,” said Young.