MISSOULA – Four outstanding students brimming with Griz spirit recently were named University of Montana Homecoming ambassadors.
Homecoming 2021 features exciting events all week, culminating with the Griz football game Saturday, Sept. 25, in Washington-Grizzly Stadium. The theme this year is “Heart of the Grizzly.”
The Griz-hearted student ambassadors are Lane Arthur of Custer, South Dakota; Siena Cysewski of Kirkland, Washington; Shelby Fisher of Ronan; and Isabelle Melton of Helena.
Years ago, the ambassadors replaced traditional Homecoming royalty at UM. They are selected by the UM Alumni Association and will be recognized at the Homecoming football game and represent UM at 2021-22 alumni events. The ambassadors were selected based on their enthusiasm and engagement with campus, as well as their academic standing and having completed at least three academic semesters.
What does the Homecoming theme mean to this year’s ambassadors?
“We care about our fellow peers, we are inclusive, we seek the success of our community and so much more,” said Arthur, who majors in wildlife biology and parks, tourism and recreation management. “The ‘heart of the grizzly’ shows just how much of a compassionate and caring campus we are and how much we strive to bring out the best in others.”
“It’s no secret what we have all been through for the past year and a half, and (the theme) speaks to the immense resilience, perseverance and spirit that we all unwaveringly possess,” said Cysewski, who majors in theater and business administration. “A grizzly bear, by nature, is strength, power, full of determination and intensity, and that nature is mirrored in UM students. We possess the determination and resilience to push through a crippling world event and still turn up ready to learn and support one another.”
How will the ambassadors represent the heart of a grizzly?
“I am proud to be a resilient, community-oriented student at the University of Montana,” said Fisher, who majors in history and political science. “Not all paths to success are smooth, but with the right community and courage, you can always reach your goals. I hope to instill in my community these values, especially through this difficult time. I hope to inspire others to continue their fight, as I have chosen to do.”
“Upon arriving in Missoula, one of the first things I did was open a branch of my nonprofit organization, Montana Soccer Soles, a program which provides soccer gear to children in need,” said Melton, who studies political science and multidisciplinary studies as a Davidson Honors College Scholar. “I am committed to saying ‘yes’ to as many experiences as possible, including playing intramural soccer, pledging a sorority, singing with the Zootown Cabaret and joining Mortar Board. Having the Heart of a Grizzly means having the courage to try new things, the confidence to help others succeed and the strength to do the right thing even when it is hard. I work hard, seek to empower others and display the courage to be different. UM has fortified in me a dedication to growth, selflessness and giving back.”
Among the remaining UM Homecoming events taking place this week are:
- The Distinguished Alumni Award Ceremony and panel discussion, which begin at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24, in the University Center Ballroom.
- The Yell Night Pep Rally, which starts at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24, on the UM Oval. It will feature the UM Marching Band, Singing on the Steps, the lighting of the M and fireworks.
- The Homecoming football game at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, in Washington-Grizzly Stadium. The Griz are taking on the Cal Poly Mustangs.
Contact: LeAnn Meyer, UM Alumni Association director, 406-243-5258, firstname.lastname@example.org.