Alumni and Friends

Ohio University Chillicothe outstanding graduate Mary Basham shines at work and in the classroom

As the spring semester draws to a close, Ohio University Chillicothe has recognized Administrative Services Associate Mary Basham with an Outstanding Graduate award and selected her as the student reflection speaker for the upcoming Graduation Recognition Ceremony. Basham, a lifelong Chillicothe resident, earned the award for her remarkable achievements while pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Applied Management and a minor in Communication Studies. 

To qualify as an Outstanding Graduate, students must receive the recommendation of faculty members, maintain a minimum GPA of 3.5, actively participate in University activities, engage in community service and demonstrate notable accomplishments such as receiving awards or contributing to research projects. 

Basham’s college journey was not a typical one. Having worked at Ohio University Chillicothe since 2015, serving in the Testing Center and Student Services, Basham saw firsthand what OHIO had to offer to its students and employees and decided to work towards a degree of her own. She earned her associate in applied business degree in 2020, and now she is graduating Summa Cum Laude with her bachelor’s degree. 

"I was taking classes kind of randomly and then I realized I was working on a business degree," Basham recalls. That moment marked a turning point, solidifying her focus and fueling her to plot her path toward degree completion.

Choosing Ohio University Chillicothe was a practical decision for Basham. 

"Being able to work my full-time job and take classes at the same time was crucial," she said. This flexibility allowed her to continue her professional responsibilities while investing in herself and her future.

Director of Students Services Ashlee Tatman said she is proud of Basham and the work she has put into earning two degrees at OHIO Chillicothe.

“Mary is such a light and joy to have on our campus,” Tatman said. “She's a wonderfully loyal employee who goes out of her way to help those around her. I'm so pleased she took advantage of the opportunity to pursue her education. It enhances the services she provides to the Student Services department and our campus. I am incredibly proud of her.

Basham enjoys helping students in any way she can and contributing to the team effort to provide excellent educational opportunities to students from the region. 

As a student, Basham encountered numerous supportive faculty members who left an indelible mark on her. 

"They were all supportive of me as a non-traditional student," Basham added. Instructors who made a lasting impact on Basham included Kimber Lang, Debra Nickles, Dr. Greg Obi, and Michael Schor, each contributing uniquely to her growth and academic journey.

Basham’s journey was not without challenges, but with the unwavering support of her colleagues and husband, she balanced work with classes and assignments. 

"Working full-time makes you value your 'off' time even more," she said. 

Reflecting on her experience as a student at OHIO Chillicothe, Basham said she appreciated the opportunities for personal growth. 

"I remember the times I was forced to step outside of my comfort zone the most," she said. 

In Dr. Obi's class, she had the opportunity to engage with viewpoints different from her own, an experience she sees as a valuable lesson in civil discourse that is crucial in today's digital age.

"You are the most important thing you can invest in, and a good education is the best investment you can make," Basham said, offering sage advice for incoming students.

She plans to leverage her degree to enhance her contributions at Ohio University Chillicothe, continuing to work at the campus and use her degree to help be a better employee.

When she’s not on campus, Basham enjoys spending time with her husband and dogs, crafting and coloring with friends, and attending concerts. 

Ohio University Chillicothe’s Graduation Recognition Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, May 2, at 6 p.m.

April 22, 2024
Staff reports