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2018 Kogod Woman of the Year: Dana Foley, ’18

Dana Foley is this years Kogod School of Business Woman of the Year. Each year, we select one student from each school that represents our 5 pillars to honor with Woman of the Year. Dana is kind at heart and ambitious, while still being an active member of the campus community. A Business Administration major with a passion for elephants and logistics management, Dana is the perfect recipient of this award.

Her Campus American: Where are you from originally and what brought you to AU?

Dana Foley: I’m originally from Durham, Connecticut. It’s a really small town but I love it! As for what brought me to AU, on my tours I always tell my “Why AU story.” I came to AU for a few different reasons- location and academic caliber. I really wanted a solid balance of academics and a great location, so DC was perfect for me. The combination of the city with a set campus and being able to come home and just relax at the end of the day was really nice. For Kogod specifically, I just knew that the business program was incredible and that I would be getting a great education in a place where I felt really comfortable. It all combined to be the perfect place for me. To quote Hannah Montana, “It’s the best of both worlds!”

HCAU: Your major is in BSBA. What is your concentration and how did you decide upon this major and concentration area?

DF: I had done a lot of work with my mom, who’s an HR executive, and had told her I didn’t know what I wanted to major in. My mom said “Why don’t you just try business school. See if you like it and, if you don’t, just go to a school where you can switch out.” I went into the business school and took Business 1.0, the intro class in Kogod, and I actually really did like it. So it just ended up working out perfectly for me.

As for my concentration, it’s called “Leadership and Management in a Global Context”. It’s a way to combine the international experience with leadership theory which is interesting to me. While studying abroad in Spain I took a negotiations course, international business, and a course on managing Spanish soccer clubs. Here I’ve taken classes like leading high performance teams, organizational behavior, and managing human capital.

HCAU: What are some internships or other professional experiences you’ve had?

DF: I think I’m kind of a unique AU student in that I’ve only had one internship in my time here, officially. This past semester I’ve been interning on the conferences team at the American Enterprise Institute, which is a think tank downtown that conducts public policy research. I help to support any of their events, from panels to keynote speakers as well as working on their large-scale annual event. I am lucky that it turned into a full-time job!

HCAU: What is your dream job?

DF: I have two! In the true definition of dream, I would like to work at an elephant sanctuary in either Africa or Thailand and run the business side of their operations. I love elephants, and I love the concept of preservation because they’re such beautiful animals. It’s my dream job because every organization needs someone to run their operations.

My career goal “dream job” would be in corporate events. I really like the logistical aspect of organizing events, especially on the corporate side like in conventions and trade shows. My ultimate career goal would be to work on either the Olympics or something like the Oscars or Academy Awards.

HCAU: Where do you see yourself five years from now?

DF: Five years from now, ideally, I will be working for some type of large scale events venue such as a convention center or something like the Verizon Center.

HCAU: We saw in your nomination that you’re very involved on campus. What activities are you currently involved in?

DF: I am an AU Ambassador, currently just at the member level so I give tours and work on special events. This past weekend I traveled back to Connecticut to speak at a reception for admitted students which was really fun! In the past I’ve been on their leaderboard which involved training the new tour guides and organizing their tour schedules. I’ve also worked as the marketing lead to develop the ambassadors social media. I am also a member of Phi Sigma Pi, the gender-inclusive national honor fraternity on campus. This past fall I served as Recruitment Chair which involved organizing and conducting recruitment, along with the help of my committee. I am also an RA in Leonard Hall and have a floor of about 40 freshman students.

HCAU:What is one piece of advice you would give to other young women?

DF: Become comfortable in yourself and being yourself. One thing I am most proud of, that I’ve developed through my time in college, is that I have become so comfortable being myself. In every relationship I have I try to be 100% genuine and don’t pretend to be someone I’m not, which is difficult to do. I feel like if you can reach a point where you can just go and do something that makes you happy without any people with you — just to do it for yourself, I think that’s something that’s really admirable and hard to find.

HCAU: Who do you look up to? Who are some of your role models?

DF: I don’t have one specific person I aim to be but all the women and people I surround myself with are so driven and accomplished and doing great things. I think little aspects of my friends personalities have all combined to become this role model of a person. I see my friends doing great things and it makes me want to do great things! I think everyone has something that they can contribute to the world and something that makes them incredible.

HCAU: When you were in elementary school what did you think you were going to be when you were older?

DF: I thought I was going to be a teacher! I have a sister who’s a year and a half older than me and when we were little we would always sit and make worksheets for our babysitter and grade them. I always thought being a teacher was the most fun, cool job in the world. When I was in fourth grade I took a Spanish class taught by the high schoolers and I thought that maybe I would be a Spanish teacher! I basically thought that until the middle of high school.


This interview has been edited for clarity and concision.

Sarah is currently Senior, graduating December 2019!, at American University. She is studying Business Administration with a self-designed concentration and a minor in literature. Sarah hopes to conquer the world one day but right now she is focused on her undergraduate degree and her law school applications. When Sarah's not writing article's for HCAU she can also be found leading the chapter as CC and President, giving tours of Kogod, working as a Kogod Team Lead, hanging with her amazing first year residents, doing her accounting intern work, or around campus with her wicked awesome friends!!! Feel free to follow Sarah on twitter and Instagram at @sarah_teix98
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