Alumni Relations

Marietta Frye


Marietta Wolczacka Frye

Director of Advising, College of Arts and Sciences

M.A., English and Linguistics, '08
Join us in congratulating Frye for being named one of Fort Wayne Business Weekly's 40 Under 40 for 2016. The award honors those who are making a difference on the job and in the community.
Q: How did you become interested in your field?
A: My dad is a psychologist and cared for those with problems like drinking, drugs, or smoking. From him I developed an interest in helping people. I grew up in Poland and earned my first degree there. The Student Affairs function that we have here really didn't exist. It was more sink or swim. When I discovered I could help students achieve their educational dreams I knew it was the right job for me.
Q: Why did you choose IPFW?
A: IPFW really chose me. I had a sales job in Poland and was with a group of students learning English and came to the U.S. as part of an exchange program. While I was here, the September 11 attacks occurred and I was too nervous to travel for quite a while. I met my husband (Fort Wayne native Robert Frye, MBA '07, MSE '11, current UnderSea Products system engineer at Ultra Electronics) and even though I spent summers in Poland, it became clear we were a perfect match. We were married and now have two children (being raised to speak English and Polish). My parents joke that I'm on a 15-year student exchange program!

Q: Who were some of your mentors at IPFW?
A: My biggest mentor was Jane Ehle. She actually gave me my test for English when I first came to campus and was a tremendous support for me and all of the other international students through the years. She was caring and a wonderful cheerleader and I'm still connected with her today.

Q: What is the best career advice you were given?
A: My father always said, "Follow your passion; do what your heart tells you." For him it wasn't important for me to follow the hottest, most lucrative career path, but to find a place to shine. After earning my degree in marketing I had a sales job where I was making a lot of money, but it wasn't fulfilling. Now, being able to see others fulfilled and making an impact has been the best part of my career.

Q: What surprised you most about IPFW?
A: The support system here is amazing. I personally have been encouraged by the first advisor I interacted with all the way through to the chancellor. There were professors who met with me whenever I needed help. Everyone I reached out to was there for me. IPFW offers a wide range of services that go beyond academic style—like military support, diversity support, suicide prevention, and so much more. And the culture here is very family friendly, which is important to me.

Q: Where do you hope to be in 10 years?
A: I'm really happy at this university and in Fort Wayne, so I definitely see myself here. With my family in Poland, we appreciate that my husband's family lives in the area. I hope in 10 years we have even more global initiatives. I'm involved with Fort Wayne Sister Cities International, Inc. and chair the Plock Committee. We've done some great things, like collaborating with John Niser from Hospitality and Tourism Management on Plock Tavern at the IPFW Holiday Inn, an interactive, hands-on learning experience for students. There are already many partnerships to benefit the international community, such as everything going on with the Burmese population. I would love to see more connections with the world. Being global is really where it's at right now.