Who: Eric Weeks (AS’92, B’93), Strategic Human Resource Leader at Owens Corning, his wife, Rosa, current law student at University of Detroit and son, Aric II.
Contributes to: The Gary and Jean Horn Annual Scholarship
Why did you attend Ferris? I was originally accepted to a Big Ten school, however, in order to enroll, I would have had to do so through an “affinity” program that required me to be there much earlier than usual, and take different classes that would help me get assimilated. For me, that wasn’t something I was very interested in. I didn’t feel that was a need, based on my experiences growing up in metropolitan Detroit and going to a strong public school system in Rochester. So all along there was this school in Big Rapids reaching out to me and saying, “Hey, anyone can come here, but only the best will stay and make it.” It was more about opportunity, and from that competition and development. I felt more aligned with that approach. So I went to Ferris and had a lot of opportunities to grow. It was one of the best decisions I ever made.
Favorite memories: One is graduation day. It was an opportunity to have so many of my friends and family — as well as my family at Ferris — come together to celebrate. Another was being a captain for one of Gary Horn’s debate teams. He was a beacon for so many of us. I was also a student assistant coach for women’s basketball, working with Lori Hyman from 1990-92. I didn’t make the men’s team, but my acumen for the game provided me an opportunity to coach the lady Bulldogs. Coaching and recruiting had a lot to do with my progress as a human resources professional. I can trace my love for putting the right talent together at the right time back to my experiences at Ferris.
Why give back? I thought about how appreciative and thankful I am for my Ferris experience and my Ferris story. I think every Bulldog has their Ferris story. We have common values and principles that are woven through those stories — “opportunity” is one that stands out for me when I think about that support I had at Ferris. As a father now, raising a son and working at creating a strong family, I draw upon my experiences at Ferris to help me be the best that I can be. I felt this was the perfect time for me to demonstrate that through a commitment, and also show my son that giving back is the right thing to do. I’d ask everyone to think about their unique Ferris experience. From that, I don’t think it’s that difficult to see there’s something you can do to help others have their own Ferris story.