This issue began as a way to highlight some of the many interesting careers UMKC alumni have embarked upon. Spend even a few minutes with our alumni, though, and it’s impossible not to notice something much deeper than their careers. What comes to the surface almost immediately are their passions and the many unique ways they’re sharing them with the world.

From food trucks to hot air balloons to the orthodontist’s chair,

the following pages are filled with stories of alumni using the skills and smarts they gained at UMKC to do some amazing things. They represent just a fraction of our TRUE BLUE alumni who are sharing their true colors in their communities.

We asked some of our alumni to be featured as an introduction to this story and asked them the question, “What drives your passion for your career?”

School of Computing and Engineering

IT senior programmer/project manager, ProKarma

“I love the challenge of doing something difficult. You get to solve a problem and help someone in the business world create something they need, whether it’s a page on their website or an entire new set of applications.”


Henry W. Bloch School of Management

Data analyst, Jackson County, Missouri Prosecutor’s Office

“I absolutely love my job. It’s satisfying to know that, even if indirectly, I’m giving back to

the community.”


School of Education

Educational Program Associate, UMKC High School/College Dual Credit Partnership

“When I first started my degree at UMKC, I took a problem solving course. That experience taught me a lot about education and beyond — how people find solutions and the wide variety of ways they do it.”


School of Nursing and Health Studies

Registered nurse, University of Kansas Medical Center

“It sounds cheesy, but I wanted to make a difference with my work. I came from a smaller town, and there’s just so much culture at UMKC. I loved the diversity. I learned how to interact with all kinds of people. That’s really important for nursing.”


Acting assistant concertmaster, Kansas City Symphony

“When I was a little girl, I wanted to be the best violinist in the world. But it’s so competitive
— it’s not always easy to find a job doing something you love. I’m really grateful. I just love making music.”

College of Arts and Sciences

Business development manager, VMLY&R

“The people are my favorite thing about my job. The work is one thing, but what lasts are relationships, and I really love that.”

Story by Lindsey Mayfield

Containing excitement
Words of wisdom from the literary world