Megan DeLong is the senior assistant director of the Mercer Admissions Department. She studied at Mercer from 2004 to 2008, and received her BA in business.
Cluster: What made you choose Mercer University?
DeLong: I chose Mercer because of the personal attention. I was so impressed when I came for a campus visit that a faculty member said ‘Hello,’ to me and gave me his e-mail address if I had any questions. He e-mailed me a couple weeks after that and said, “Oh, it was so nice to meet you! We exchanged contact information. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me.” I thought that was so cool. The first time I visited campus – and this was the first campus I ever visited – I told my parents, “This is what I felt college would look like. This was exactly what I pictured.” It was the community feel, and the look of the campus. I compared everything to Mercer after that visit.
C: Why did you choose your major?
D: I started out in the School of Music, and as much as I love music and the School of Music, I didn’t want to do classical music professionally, I realized. I was also nervous about how to get a job with a music major – I didn’t want to teach music. So, I switched into the school of business because I love people and I’m really outgoing. So marketing seemed like it would be really interesting, so I switched into marketing my sophomore year.
C: What sorts of clubs and organizations were you a part of, during your time at Mercer?
D: I was a part of Mercer Singers, because I loved the music. I was in a sorority – Chi Omega. I participated with Up ‘Til Dawn.
C: You were also a part of a group called “The Red Swill,” correct?
D: Yes! Yes, I played downtown a lot. I was in a band called “The Red Swill.” We were a bluegrass band, and I performed by myself, as well. I’m a singer/songwriter still here in town. I play downtown a lot in restaurants, and some of the bars on the square, and music is kind of what I do a lot in my free time.
C: Now, everybody has their own favorite place to “hang out.” What was yours, while going to school?
D: Duncan’s Lounge, upstairs in the Connell Student Center, with the big-screen T.V. My roommate always went to bed really early, and I was a night-owl. I remember so many times it would be that I would stay up late and hang out with friends. I always joked about how I wanted to have a college life.
C: What is your best memory about Mercer?
D: Oh! Great Books 495. Dr. Cass. He was about to retire, and it was my senior year and his last semester here at Mercer. I went in on the first day. Dr. Cass came in, and he was like a little, old grandfather. He had a bow tie,and glasses, and that’s what he wore every day. He comes into class, puts his arm around my neck, yanks me out of my chair and holds a pen up to my throat and growls “This could have been a scene from The Iliad!” Everybody was like “Oh, my god, this guy is crazy.”
The class was about The Iliad, and we had just read it for the semester. He picks me up off the floor, dusts me off and holds out his hand, “Mike Cass. Hey, you alright?” “Yeah! Fine! I’m good.” And that was the first class of an amazing semester with Dr. Cass. By far the best class I took at Mercer.
C: In what ways has Mercer Changed the most in your eyes?
D: Physically, I am so impressed with the growth that the campus has experienced. When I graduated, I got a job in admissions immediately, so I got to watch it grow physically over the past five years. Mercer Village was huge to see it actually build from just this plan that we were presented with in a staff meeting from the president. To see it actually built, and to be finished was so cool, and now with Cruz Plaza, as well.
C: What is the most notable thing you’ve learned from your Mercer experience?
D: Mercer taught me how to think for myself, and how to use my brain. I was so nervous about talking, when I got to Mercer. I loved to talk, but I didn’t like to rock the boat, or to make conflict. “You have your opinions, and I have mine.” That’s still very true, but I feel like Mercer taught me how to argue and how to defend my position, and also made me evaluate why I held that position at all. Just thinking it because I “feel that way,” is absolutely fine, but there’s got to be a little bit more substance about why you believe it, and why you think what you think.