Woman of the Year: Talya Wells, Kogod '16

Talya Wells is our 2016 Kogod Women of the Year. She is a senior in the business school, graduating this spring. Originally from Colts Neck, New Jersey, Talya is studying business administration with a focus on marketing and graphic design.

Besides being on the Dean’s List every semester, Talya is a Peer Ambassador in the Kogod 1955 Club, which helps students extend their experiences beyond the classroom and supports first year students in their adjustment to college. She is also the Artistic Director of Kogod Marketing Association; her graphic design work has been featured in the Katzen Design Show. In previous years, she was an Orientation Leader for incoming freshmen. Talya’s attitude, perspective and impact on those around her make a true embodiment of a Woman of the Year. 

Her Campus American University: Of the activities you’ve been involved in, which has been your favorite?

Talya Wells: It’s hard to choose but being an orientation leader was a blast, it was so much fun and I made lasting friendships. It was trying at times but I learned a lot through that which helped me when I got to other things.

HCAU: What are you passionate about?

TW: The planet Earth, the environment, and anything green is really important to me. Also I would say travel— I studied abroad in London, and got to travel throughout England and Europe while I was there. And graphic design— I love the creativity, and pushing to try new things. Sometimes it’s to the extreme, where there are so many things I want to try but there’s a deadline so even though I always feel like I could do more I have to stop somewhere. I love the ongoing creative process.

HCAU: What’s the most important thing you’ve learned during your time at AU?

TW: I’ve learned a lot about myself through self-reflection. Some people seem to have a clear path to their futures but when I applied here I didn’t specifically know what I wanted to do. In getting to know myself I’ve been able to focus in and figure out what I like. I’ve gained a lot of confidence and learned the value of friendship.

HCAU: What women do you look up to?

TW: My sister, she’s always on top of everything, she knows what she wants and she goes for it. She keeps me in check too— she tells it like it is, even if that’s not what I want to hear. My mom is an amazing woman. She’s a great female role model; she’s strong, determined, smart. And my friend Casey Moran, who has always been selfless. She is working towards becoming a fire fighter and it blows my mind how much she cares and gives back.

HCAU: What makes you feel powerful?

TW: Music. I don’t know if that’s the kind of answer you were expecting but music I can strut to is empowering. So are friends, especially a lot of my female friends who encourage me to be my best, and Logan, my German shepherd.

HCAU: Where do you see yourself in seven years?

TW: With 10 dogs…no, not really. Maybe in another country, maybe back in London, with a job in graphic design and marketing. I hope I’ll have a dog— at least one dog— I’ll have traveled a lot and be surrounded by great people and great friends.

HCAU: What advice do you have to empower other women?

TW: Surround yourself with people who care about you and want what’s best for you. On the other side of that be selfless, be a person others want to surround themselves with. Be a little bit selfish sometimes, but be selfless. Do the things that make you happy.


Photo Credit: Kristie Chua