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Discovering many passions

8/10/2014

One passion brought Arin Powers to Fort Hays State University. Another has kept her here.

One passion brought Arin Powers to Fort Hays State University. Another has kept her here.

Powers came to FHSU on a golf scholarship in 2011 but gave up that after one season to become more involved in other organizations.

Now, heading into her senior year, Powers will serve as one of the top leaders in the Student Government Association.

"I love golf, but I also wanted to be involved," said Powers, who was elected SGA vice president by the student body last spring and is acting president this summer.

Powers soon realized after arriving at Fort Hays there were a lot of avenues with which she wanted to experiment.

"I knew I wasn't going to the LPGA, and it takes a lot of time to be involved in athletics in college," she said, "and I really wanted to be involved in a lot of things in college."

"I didn't want to do anything halfway," said Powers, who was vice president of her high school student council at Mooreland, Okla. "So I made a pretty tough decision to quit golf (after one season at FHSU)."

Powers already had gotten involved in Greek life her freshman year and now is a member of the Delta Zeta sorority.

"I still am able to play golf on my own, and it's a decision I haven't regretted," she said of expanding her horizons.

Powers, who is majoring in business management with a concentration in business law, also is minoring in leadership studies. She put her leadership skills to good use the past year as director of Tigers in Service, which provides FHSU students community service opportunities.

Were it not for a late decision to make a trip north to Hays from her home in Mooreland -- a small town of approximately 1,200 located east of Woodward, Okla. -- Powers might be in Texas instead of Kansas today.

She said she was scheduled for a visit to Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas, her senior year in high school but decided to take the 3-hour trip to Hays before traveling 3.5 hours to Wichita Falls.

"I had never even heard of Fort Hays," she said. "But I was being recruited to play golf, and I thought I should at least check it out."

She said she immediately liked what she saw, not only on campus but in the community as well.

"I loved the political science and business departments," she said, "and the people were so welcoming. Not all communities embrace their colleges the way we do."

* Diane Gasper-O'Brien, HDN