Neely Woods Hunter, MUW '95 Bio

I graduated from MUW in 1995 with a BA in English and Social Science.  I worked in-field for approximately 3 years but could not settle on a career choice.  In 1998 I enrolled in massage therapy school at The Academy of Somatic Healing Arts in Norcross, GA.  While I student there, I continued to work full-time until the birth of my first child in 1999.  After graduation from MT school in April 2000, I became a full-time homemaker caring for my toddler daughter and my son who was born in early 2001.  A few years later I decided to foray back into massage therapy and opened my own business primarily working from home so that I could still raise my children full-time.

My home business grew each year and finally in 2008, with both my children in school full-time, I decided it was time to move my business out of our house.  I’ve continued to grow my practice as well as my skills.  I completed my Reiki Master training in the Usui Method of Natural Healing in 2008 and will teach my first Reiki workshop in February 2009.

While my W degrees do not play a direct role in my current career of choice, the skills I learned both in my fields of study and at the W, in general, have afforded me an indispensable arsenal of skills to manage my own business, communicate with my clients, and balance my extremely busy volunteer life while maintaining a very hands-on role in managing my young family.

I serve as the Community Concerns Chair for my local Council of Catholic Women.  I’ve served as a Girl Scout Leader for the past two years, as Cookie Coordinator the previous year, and parent volunteer the year before that.  I was Secretary and Project Coordinator for my neighborhood association for four years.  I’ve been actively involved in my W Social Club Alumnae Associations since my graduation and most recently became involved with the national Alumnae Association in 2005, serving on the young alum committee that first year, then on the PR, Tech/Web, and Homecoming Visibility Committees for 2007-08. I am Board Secretary, Elections Chair, Web Chair, and a member of the PR, Tech, Name Change, and Transition Committees for 2008-09.

My foremost commitment to MUW is in preserving her historic and original mission as the first public women’s university in America.  Even though I attended well after the school became a coed institution, I believe that the mission and the make-up of the student body (still predominantly female) provided me a superior education and educational opportunities without the hardships of attending a private single-sex institution.  In fact, I feel I gained a greater sense of respect for human diversity by attending a public institution with such a unique mission.

My involvement with The MUW Alumnae Association directly correlates with my commitment to preserve The W’s unique role in both history and the present to continue the traditions as well as to advance the mission of offering college students, especially young women, the same opportunities I was afforded.  I hope to send my daughter to The W in 2017.

My husband, John S. Hunter, III (MSU ’94, GC ’97) and I live in Brunswick, GA, and are the parents of two children, Brenna, 9, and Jess, 8.