Anna Stumpf was catching up with her past student and friend, Hannah Huffman, when one of her current students, Gabby Clemente, walked into her office with a huge grin on her face. Stumpf assumed that Clemente wanted to stop by to see Huffman since she previously worked with her at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
However, when Clemente got their attention, she screamed, “I got the internship with Disney!” All three squealed with excitement.
Stumpf was so over the moon with her student’s success that she took photos of Clemente in the moment of celebratory screaming and created a four-photo Instagram post to share Clemente’s accomplishment with the world.
This type of student-teacher relationship is something that Stumpf strives for with all her students, and Clemente is just one of many.
Senior marketing student Jack Stanton has been one of Stumpf’s students for most of his AU undergrad career.
“Anna Stumpf has been an integral piece of my success beyond the classroom at AU,” says Stanton. “She has a rare appetite for helping students achieve great heights and hasn’t let that narrative down since I first sought her help. I’m truly grateful for Anna’s constant encouragement and continued grace upon my journey as a student.”
College is a whole new ballpark for students. It’s an influential time in any young person’s life, and Stumpf recognizes that it’s her duty to meet students where they are at.
“I never really had anyone who invested in me when I was in college,” said Stumpf. “We certainly don’t encourage students enough that they’re going to be okay once they’re in the real-world.”
With this being her fifth year teaching at AU as an assistant professor of marketing, Stumpf has a very specific style and approach to how she teaches. Since every professor teaches differently, it is important to know how students learn best. Stumpf believes that being “student-centric” is the way to go.
“I don’t take myself too seriously, but it’s not a teacher-centric feel in my classroom,” said Stumpf. She teaches a large number of students from a range of courses, and she currently teaches all principles of marketing courses, social media, sports marketing, business of the game day for sports marketing, sales and sponsorship for sports marketing, and an MBA marketing strategy course.
“I teach as much real-world application as I can,” said Stumpf. “I include many real marketing examples along with current world events and cultivate lots of examples from social media.”
Ask students about their time with Stumpf in the classroom, and you’ll be in discussion for a long time. Many of them even accredit her to their current success both in and out of the classroom.
“Anna has been hands-down the greatest blessing from AU, and I firmly believe I was meant to come here to meet her,” says Clemente. “There have been multiple times when I’ve texted her late at night or during the weekend for help on my resume, LinkedIn or school, and she has always replied. She has provided me with endless opportunities that have led me to my internship with Disney. I wouldn’t be the girl boss that I am if it wasn’t for her cheering me on.”
Yet Stumpf refuses to accept the praise her students give her regarding her “providing endless opportunities” for them.
“I get a lot of credit for things that I shouldn’t be getting,” said Stumpf. “Students tell me all the time how they couldn’t have done it without me, and I just think how untrue that is. Gabby was the one who found the Disney job posting herself. I didn’t find it or beg her to apply for it. When she says she couldn’t have done it without me, my response is that that is not true, because she did.”
Stumpf’s passion for her students goes well beyond the marketing department. Many other students in a variety of courses take classes with Stumpf because of what they have heard about her from others.
“I’ve had a few students come in who have said, ‘I’ve heard you’re the person I need to talk to about LinkedIn,’ and I’m thinking I have 50,000 things to do today but, yes. If someone thought I was valuable enough that you walked over here, didn’t know who I was or what I looked like, you found me, and are asking for help. I will drop everything right now to help you.”
To go even further, Stumpf has something in the works to help current and future marketing students get more experience that they wouldn’t otherwise.
The potential idea will be a type of experiential lab and will start with students running the Falls School of Business social media. Internship experience can be hard to come by because of competition; however, by having upperclassmen manage the underclassmen in a business-like atmosphere, students will conduct projects that they would be executing in the field.
Stumpf’s goal is to help as many students as she can even when her cup is empty. Her servant heart has not gone unnoticed by her students and her fellow faculty.
“I wouldn’t be able to have the deep conversations I get to have with my students if I worked at a different university,” said Stumpf. “I am infectiously passionate and so blessed to be here with these young people.”