40 Under 40 Class of 2020

Melissa Sippel

Director of Enrollment Marketing, Bay Path University; Police Officer, West Springfield Police Department; Age 28; Education: Bay Path University (BS, MS)

In addition to her role at Bay Path, overseeing a wide array of undergraduate and graduate outreach efforts, Sippel has a passion for public service. Among other roles, she’s a part-time police officer in West Springfield and president of the Springfield chapter of Zonta International, which promotes women’s rights through service and advocacy.

Melissa Sippel

Melissa Sippel   Photo by Leah Martin Photography

What did you want to be when you grew up? I wanted to be the person who drives the luggage truck at the airport. That is the first job I remember wanting. I think I figured, if I worked at the airport, I could fly any time I wanted — and guarantee my luggage would be on the plane! I am sure it stemmed from my love of flying and traveling, a love I still have today.

What three words best describe you? Empathetic, creative, enthusiastic.

What’s been your biggest professional accomplishment so far in your career? I am very proud of the Excellence Awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education that my team has won over the years, including two gold awards. I am especially proud of the award we received for a video that I helped produce. It was a point-of-view video of a college student’s experience, and I wore a GoPro camera on my forehead to film it.

What do you do for fun? I love to craft. I make crafts out of things people would otherwise throw away. I like taking what someone would consider trash and turning it into something beautiful.

What are you passionate about? Crafting. Vegetarianism. Bowties. Documentaries. Community service. Recycling. Social justice. My girlfriend. And world peace.

Who inspires you, and why? My grandmother. She is my best friend and my biggest cheerleader. She is kind, fair, and compassionate. She has been through a lot but has accomplished so much over her lifetime, even at times when it was not easy for women to succeed.

What person, past or present, would you like to have lunch with, and why? My grandfather, who passed away a few months before I was born. My family always says I am a lot like him, and I would love to have a conversation with him to see what they mean, and to show him who I have become.

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