Scholar Profiles - Sydney Gambrell

Name: Sydney Gambrell

Classification: Graduate

Major: English

Hometown: Pendleton, South Carolina

Primary Volunteering Site: Anne Springs Close Greenway

What makes the Close Scholars Program special to you?

At Winthrop, community engagement is valued and appreciated and through the Close Scholars Program, students can be involved, seek knowledge and support our surrounding communities. To me, that is incredibly special to my time as a Winthrop student. We are fortunate to have leaders among us that understand the true value of connection and volunteerism. This program pursues its students to harness their talents while also pushing them to become servant leaders. As Close Scholars, we work together to make differences around our campus and community; it does not get much more special than that.

What do you love about the Close Scholars Program?

The Close Scholars Program holds a special place here as a Winthrop student. I have thoroughly enjoyed being a part of a group of leaders and volunteers that are willing to help with any need on any day. The hearts of the Close Scholars truly shine across Winthrop’s campus, and it is an honor to be a part of this servant-driven group. I enjoy being able to grow closer with my fellow peers that are also Close Scholars and share experiences that have impacted us through this program. My time as a Close Scholar thus far has been nothing short of unique and rewarding.

Why should incoming first-year students apply to the Close Scholars Program?

Applying to the Close Scholars Program has opened several doors and opportunities for me, and I wish every Winthrop student could experience the joys of being a Close Scholar. First-year students should apply to become Close Scholars so they can be a part of something not only larger than themselves, but also larger than their campus at Winthrop. I believe any college student that decides to work selflessly within their community will reap valuable experiences and skills that will last a lifetime while also helping those around them.

As a servant leader, what advice do you have for Winthrop students in general?

Winthrop students have so many special opportunities right at their fingertips, so I would remind them to take advantage of each experience. Students should cater these experiences to their interests while also stepping out of their comfort zone. Being a college student can certainly be intimidating, however, there is so much to be learned and an abundance of growth waiting for students in all the right places. One of my favorite quotes reminds me to go out on a limb because that is where the fruit is. Sometimes our scariest and most uncomfortable moments turn out to be where we can create the most change and impact around us.

What has been your favorite community service experience?

Recently, I have been able to partner with Anne Springs Close Greenway’s Preschool to create a nature and wildlife-inspired alphabet chalkboard. I have begun creating designs for each letter within the alphabet to coordinate with a related animal or plant that is special to South Carolina. Soon, I will begin the painting process for each student and child to enjoy within the future. I have an appreciation for both the outdoors and education, so this project has been quite the excitement. I am eager to see it come to life!

Fun Fact :-)

Outside of my time as a Winthrop student, I enjoy spending time with my family and three dogs: Ozzy, Cleo and Sam. Shopping, visiting the nail salon, making art, and eating sushi with my best friend is always essential during my free time.

Favorite Performer

Some of my favorites include Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, Aerosmith and Mac Miller.

Favorite Hobby

I love to travel, and I hope to study abroad in the future as an art student.