Three influential members of the Olivet College community are being honored for their contributions and success at the annual Awards Celebration, one of the most exciting events during Homecoming Oct. 6-8. Join the Young Alumni, 1844 and Distinguished Alumni honorees Oct. 6 at 5:30 p.m. at the Cutler Event Center’s Hathaway Court for dinner and celebration. The Athletic Hall of Fame inductees will also be honored at the celebration.
Melanie Engels ’08, Pharm.D., Young Alumni Award Honoree
Melanie Engels ’08, Pharm.D., may not have obtained a longstanding career quite yet, but she certainly has served her profession well in her own time. Melanie, from Battle Creek, has been the pharmacy manager at the Munson Community Health Center since 2016. The list of the experience she gained during her time as a student and two years of post-graduate residency spans pages. She has provided research assistance which is published frequently, maintains membership to a considerable number of professional associations and has been honored with a tremendous amount of awards in her short time as a professional, many for contributions through community service and volunteer work.
Even this early in her career, Melanie is recognized as a leader in the standardization of medications compounded for pediatric patients. She devoted four years to this cause as a research assistant at the University of Michigan Health System. As Melanie transitioned to a manager at the U of M Department of Pharmacy, she continued to advocate for the standardization of work procedures across the state. In 2014, Melanie was presented the Cheer’s Award by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices for her work.
Melanie earned her bachelor’s from Olivet College in biology and biochemistry, along with graduating from the Global Citizen Honors Program. While at Olivet, Melanie participated in the wind and jazz ensembles, was a member of Soronian Literary Society and was involved in several other clubs and organizations. She was a recipient of the Olivet College Women’s Board Scholarship and the Olivet College Valedictorian Scholarship as well as the Donald A. Morris Academic Excellence Award. She continues to be a valuable member of the Olivet College community as she serves on the Alumni Council and returns for guest lectures.
Melanie furthered her education at New England College where she concentrated in health care administration and management to obtain her MBA, and at the University of Michigan where she earned her Doctor of Pharmacy in 2012. She continued to impress her peers and superiors during that time and was recognized continuously by Phi Delta Chi, one of the largest pharmacy fraternities in the country, as well as for her leadership skills and community contributions.
Melanie and her husband, Edward Lauermann, married on July 12, 2014 in Frankenmuth. Several of her classmates from Olivet were in attendance, including two in the wedding party. In her free time, Melanie enjoys gardening, listening to audiobooks and spending time with family and friends.
David Hayhow, 1844 Award Honoree
David Hayhow was a member of the Olivet College Board of Trustees from 1995 to 2015, serving nine years as chair. He was named trustee emeritus on Oct. 2, 2015.
After earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism and advertising from Michigan State University (MSU) in 1955, Hayhow began a career that is truly reflective of the college’s academic vision, Education for Individual and Social Responsibility. Starting with the Pontiac Press, he worked for four other publications throughout his career, holding positions from staff writer to publisher. Following his work in the newspaper industry, he was executive assistant to the lieutenant governor; he founded and published Great Lakes Life magazine; and he also founded and served as president of Publicom Association Management Services.
Even with a busy work schedule, Hayhow still found time to serve his community. He served as a member or director for numerous organizations, including the MSU Foundation, University Corporate Research Park, Professional Advisory Committee to the MSU School of Journalism, Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame, BoarsHead Theatre and Michigan Press Association.
Beyond his work experience, Hayhow has taken great pride in the growth and development of Olivet College since being asked to serve on its board of trustees. During his tenure, he was involved with and oversaw projects including the Burrage Library expansion, the Heritage Campaign, Phases I and II of the Cutler Athletic Complex/Cutler Event Center, Gillette Student Village, and the Embracing Opportunity and Responsibility Campaign, among other initiatives. Hayhow has spent countless hours seeing that Olivet College advances and succeeds. In 2009, he was awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, for his dedication to Olivet, and in 2012 he was recognized with the college’s Leadership in Individual and Social Responsibility Award.
Woodrow “Woody” Wilson ’69, Distinguished Alumni Award Honoree
Serving nearly 40 years in higher education, Woodrow “Woody” Wilson ’69 was a valuable resource to students at Jackson Community College (JCC) and continues to be a supporter of his alma mater, Olivet College. Woody’s teaching career launched in 1969 as a Head Start teacher before transitioning to Starr Commonwealth in 1972 where he spent a short amount of time before devoting his career to several roles at JCC until he retired in 2011. Woody began as JCC’s director of career development for persons with special needs in 1972, assisting disadvantaged and handicapped students. From 1978 to 1999, he was a counselor in student personnel services. In 1999, Woody then joined the teaching faculty as a history instructor to teach classes on African-American history and the development of the U.S. during and after the Civil War.
Woody has been recognized for his involvement above and beyond the necessary duties in his career and community. In 2012, JCC honored Woody with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Medal of Service Award recognizing his contribution to the retention of students of color. He served on the board of Goodwill Industries, the Johnson Child Care and Development Center board in Albion, the Albion Hospital Board, is a member of the Greater Albion Scholarship Fund and Albion Black Alumni Scholarship Fund committees and served on committees to help elect the Albion mayor. He also serves on Olivet College’s Alumni Council and is a very active member within the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church.
A proponent for higher education, Woody continues to serve students and campuses even after retirement. He has created a scholarship for JCC students and supports the Woodrow Wilson Multicultural Center on JCC’s Central Campus. He also has remained a provider to Olivet College’s athletic programs, scholarship funds, multicultural program and other academic needs. Woody advocates for other alumni to help students in any way they are able.
Woody’s wife, Shearly Wilson ’72, also attended Olivet College where the couple spent several years together early in their relationship. The two were married for 45 years before Shearly’s passing in 2015. He has one son, Brandon. Woody resides in Albion, where he enjoys reading, listening to music, watching the History and Discovery channels and attending Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church.