EMELY RUIZ LOPEZ: Surround Yourself With Inspiration and Growth

Each semester, the Centennial Student Union recognized eight outstanding students who excel as leaders in the campus community or within the CSU student staff. The BEST Board, the 55-foot display in the CSU Hearth Lounge, is a way of Boasting Exceptional Student Talent. This eight-part series offers a glimpse of each of those student leaders for Spring 2021.

Photo of Emely Lopez with her BEST Board quote.
Emely Lopez


Emely Lopez is a biomedical science major from Le Center, Minn. She is set to graduate in Spring 2022. Her involvement on campus includes:

  • Maverick Involvement Team
  • Alternative Spring Break Leader
  • Pre-Dental Club
  • Community Engagement
  • Mavs in Action                  

Twice nominated for this Spring’s BEST Board, Emely is recognized for outstanding involvement in Student Activities volunteerism and leadership programs.

One nominator stated: “She is hardworking, charismatic and personable, and because she is constantly taking initiative. I first noticed Emely’s hard-working nature with her participation at Leadership U workshops throughout the 2019-2020 school year. Emely attended a vast majority of these workshops. Not only did she attend but she was a very active participant and contributor. She was always willing to share her take on things and encouraged others to do so as well.”

A second nomination stated: “I know Emely best through her consistent attendance and participation Mav’s in Action throughout the 2019-2020 school year. In addition, she is serving as a student lead for the Alternative Spring Break trip in the spring of 2021 for the 2020-2021 school year. I have worked with her throughout the spring and fall semester of 2020. There is no doubt in my mind that Emely is the perfect Maverick representative for Best Board.”

Her BEST Board quote reads: “Campus involvement allows me to grow as a leader, but more than anything, it allows me to connect with people who are like-minded and inspire growth.”

Using your own experience, what advice for personal fulfillment and college enrichment would you offer to fellow students?

EMELY: “I highly encourage students to get involved. Get involved in something that you are interested in but also don’t be afraid to do something that is outside your comfort zone, go to that meeting all by yourself, apply for that leadership role, go to an event you never would have thought of going to and it will all bring you lots of opportunity.”

We often get asked, “How do I get on the BEST Board?” What do you think helped earn you your BEST Board distinction?

EMELY: “I don’t think one specific thing will get you on best board but a variety of things. I started getting involved, I stepped up to be in leadership roles and I try to be a friend to the people around me.”

Why did you pick the quote used on the BEST Board? Please provide some background.

EMELY: “In my quote, I mentioned being around people that inspire growth. At first, I looked at being involved as something that I needed to do to be a good candidate for dental school but through being involved I realized that it was much more than that. I learn so much from the people around me. The people around me have brought friendship, opportunity, and support, much more than what I was originally signing up for.”

What involvement or leadership experience at Minnesota State Mankato best defines you, your interests, or your proudest moment? 

EMELY: “The Maverick Involvement team is a big part of my involvement on campus. When I become a part of the team, I saw It a great resume builder and a way to grow in my leaderships skills but never realized that I would grow just as much from the people that are on my team and how much they have become a part of my life.”

Where do you hope to take your college education earned at Minnesota State Mankato (what are your career aspirations)?

EMELY: “I hope to continue my education and get into dental school, I will apply to several school across the country and see where life takes me and eventually, I’ll become a dentist.”

What words of wisdom would you share in these unusual times?

EMELY: “Take things one day at a time. As someone that has a lot of different activities going on, If I were to focus on all the due dates and everything that needs to get done, I will stress myself out. I’ve realized now that everything will get done and I will find the time to do what needs to be done I just have to take it one day at a time.”


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