10 Within 10 Award recipients happy to be awarded for their work after graduation

The recipients of the 10 Within 10 Award were recently announced by Oakland University’s Young Alumni Chapter, an award given out to alumni who have made an exceptional impact within their professions and throughout their communities.

Three of these recipients are Kara Tripi, Tej Yale and Louise Harder. Each of them has done exceptional work to further themselves and their communities. This gave them the opportunity to either be nominated for the award or apply for it themselves. Each person was surprised and honored to be chosen to receive the award.

Yale is the CEO of a company he started in June 2016 called ThinkImpact1st. Right out of college, Yale worked for AIM while working up to form his own company. He said the combination of the internships he worked and his experience in corporate settings is what helped him create the company.  

Not only that, but his parents’ entrepreneurial background helped him to achieve his goals.

“I am grateful for my parents’ support on my entrepreneurial journey,” Yale said. “I am very grateful to win this award.”

Yale said back when he graduated, OU had only about 10,000 students, and it was good to see it grow over the years. He plans to expand the company in the future and they have already started a nonprofit.

In 2017, Harder started working at her current job, which is the Prevention Network, a Michigan based company dedicated to preventing drug and alcohol related abuse and addictions. Harder said she found out about the job because Erica Wallace, Rec Center health educator and coordinator of student wellness, told her about it.

She also works for Army of Survivors, a nonprofit organization started by victims of the Larry Nassar case and dedicated to preventing and bringing accountability for sexual abuse against athletes .

Harder said she wanted to focus on higher education and she would like to go back to working with students on campus. She thinks the coolest thing to see on the OU campus is the development that happens all around her.

Harder said she wasn’t expecting to receive the award, and she is honored.

“It’s an incredible honor, and I am really proud of my accomplishments,” Harder said. “It’s important to celebrate your successes as well as recognize your failures.”

Tripi’s first job out of college was at Macomb Community College. She applied to many different colleges before she received her job at University of Michigan. Tripi said she worked at Michigan as the Recruitment and Admissions Counselor for three years before she recently got a job at Michigan State.

Tripi completed an English major in her undergraduate and a master’s program in communication. Emily Cutlip, Career Services career consultant, nominated her, and Tripi was surprised and shocked when she learned she had received the award.

She said she currently wants to pursue her Ph.D. and is hoping to reach the position of director one day.

“Eventually I want to be a director for student life.” Tripi said, “It was really rewarding working at Michigan because I worked with women and underrepresented minorities.”

The 2019 10 within 10 Award recipients are: Michael Fiorillo, Louise Harder, Brandon Lee, Elizabeth Lekarczyk, Kyle Nieporte, Paige Pattenaude, Kara Tripi, Gina Valente, Melissa Winkler and Tej Yale.