Student-athlete succeeded with support of mentor, business internships

The opportunity to play NCAA Division II basketball led Carly Holboke '17 to Dominican. However, the Vancouver, Washington native said it was Dr. Christopher Leeds, her faculty mentor, whose support and encouragement helped her realize and fully develop her athletic, academic, and personal strengths.

“He kept me grounded when I needed it and pushed me out of my comfort zone,” said Carly, now project manager for sales for Dibble & Dibble, a North Bay promotional and marketing firm. “I attributed a lot of my success and future plans from his mentorship and guidance over my four years at Dominican.”

Dominican’s focus on both outstanding athletics and outstanding academics was obvious when Carly first set foot on campus as a women’s basketball recruit.

“Basketball was the original reason I became aware of Dominican, but it was a combination of both the team and the business program that ultimately solidified my decision to come here,” she recalled. “I wanted to be a part of something that just felt `right’ and that's what I found at Dominican.”

The basketball team soon became Carly’s second family for the Mountain View High School product from Washington state. Dr. Leeds, a professor of business in the Barowsky School of Business, fast became a valued mentor.

“Dr. Leeds became my mentor almost immediately,” said Carly, who majored in Business Administration and minored in Leadership. “Every internship I had in some way relates back to a connection made through Dr. Leeds.”

Guided by Dr. Leeds’ expertise and professional connections, Carly’s first internship as a sophomore was with the athletics department administration. Dr. Leeds also led her to digital marketing internships with Craford Benefit Consultants and Dibble & Dibble, as well as a social media internship for Dominican’s marketing department. Her assistance  to develop and implement a social media strategy for Dominican’s College Debate 2016 voter engagement initiative not only helped #collegedebate16 reach 1.78 million social media users, but also earned Carly a seat in the audience at the October 2016 presidential debate between President Donald Trump and Senator Hillary Clinton.

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As a junior, Carly also served as the president of the Pacific West Conference’s and Dominican’s student-athlete advisory committees. In June, a month after graduating from Dominican, Carly was nominated as NCAA Division II Woman of the Year.

“Carly has not only achieved in the classroom and on the basketball court, she is a shining example of the BSB philosophy that internships lead to careers,” Dr. Leeds said then. “Carly completed five internships while at Dominican with her final internship turning into a full-time marketing position. She's an outstanding example of Dominican student success.”

Carly’s most memorable achievement was being named Outstanding Business Student of the Year.

“It was such an honor to be recognized for all of the hard work that I put in during my college years. It wasn't always an easy road, but I can thank all of my professors for believing in me and leading me along the way," Carly said. "As monumental as it was that I graduated college, I think of my Dominican experience as the foundational building for the rest of my life. I will never have another four years like I did here, and all of my experiences have helped begin the rest of the years to come.”


June 5, 2017