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CCU Family Featured Student

Name: Olivia Bertelsen                                                                                                 

Hometown: Rock City, Ill.

Year in School: Senior (!!!!!)                                                                      

Major: Marine Science


Olivia is a marine science major.

Olivia's Web Page * Olivia's Video

In many of the #CCUfamily student profiles over the course of the 2017-18 academic year, we featured students who arrived on campus reserved and shy. They didn’t know the exact direction they were headed nor how to successfully get involved on campus. Because of their own will and Coastal’s natural charm, these students eventually “came out of their shell” and blossomed.

We are ending the semester with a different type of student.

When Olivia Bertelsen stepped on campus, she needed no warming up period. In fact, this student was so pumped to start her undergraduate career that she had already participated in a CCU social media campaign before even attending her first class. Olivia brought purpose and energy with her, never letting that intensity subside during her time at Coastal.

From the first day, Olivia knew she wanted to major in marine science. She knew she wanted to make lifelong friends. She knew she wanted to develop valuable connections with professors. Most importantly, she knew she truly wanted to experience Coastal. No question about it, she achieved all objectives.    

Whether it was studying abroad in Scotland, playing on the CCU Quidditch team, working on-campus jobs, hitting up local music venues or hopping in the car for road trips, Olivia took advantage of her University and the area around her. While having the time of her life, she learned a thing or two along the way.

“CCU allowed me to learn about myself,” Olivia says. “I had to move 1,100 miles away from home to come here so it really taught me to be independent and fend for myself; basically grow up.”

Her appreciation for Coastal doesn’t stop there. As mentioned above, and attested to by Olivia her freshman year, she wanted to build relationships with her professors. With this goal already set forth, perhaps it came as no surprise that a dedicated individual like Olivia easily made meaningful connections with a group of men and women eager to see their students succeed.

“Everybody at Coastal, especially faculty and staff, is super dedicated to their students and making the University the best it can be.”

On Saturday, it will be Olivia’s time to shine. When she walks across the HTC Center stage and President DeCenzo hands her a diploma, she will become the first member of her immediate family to graduate from college. It doesn’t get much better than that.

As she moves past CCU, Olivia’s plan is to become a commissioned officer with the United States Coast Guard via the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Corps. The NOAA is a branch of the Coast Guard and would require Olivia to directly use her marine science degree while on the job. It would be a fulfilling reward for a student who has made her family extremely proud and demonstrated to her peers how to truly make the most out of a college experience. Olivia, you are a special Chanticleer and we will miss you.


Spring Semester 2018 

Tyler McKee

Rachel Fullerton

Alexis Bothe

Courtney Sabo

Ken Wilson

Gavin Carnahan

Chase Newsome

Tori Smith

Mark Wright

Jessica Vasiliades

Alley Rivers

Madalynn Marrone

Kelsey Kramer

Carly Hilton

Taylor Humphries

Sarah Hess

Amelia Smith

ArRon Washington

Dallina Vera

Rachael Cormier

Kaleb Jenkins

Andi McDanel

Lyndsay Conroy

Ben Anderson

J.J. Jenkins

Michael Perrotto

Alexis DiMarzo

Kiki Sirett

Jake Sarver

Sydney Brown

Ed Perrine

Kinga Windisch

Mike Cahill

Trevor Carver

Paul Wedel

Danny Schneider 

Lanie Karstrom

Patrick Dempsey

Alice Cetinkaya

Huston Todd

Gillian Ronayne

Sarina Stasi

Matthew Welch

Emilee Hassanzadeh

Olivia Bertelsen

Fall Semester 2017

Tiffany Johnson

Christopher Mathis

Shonte Clement 

Nathan Paschal

Alex Lucas

Eriq Bruce

Megan Garrell

Samantha Parnell

Patrick Winum

Rachael Larsen

Anna Beck

Michael Baney

Hattie Jordan

Lauren Levesque

Francesca Caravella

Leah Alford

Brittany Southerland

Michele Enanga

Erica Armellino

Dylan Masiello

Saaya Morikawa

Rich Fruchterman

Paris Winters

Nick Orr

Mikayla Morris

Whitney Forlines

Parag Desai

Chanice La Touche

Kenneth Stillwell

Madison Wolf

Ashley Siehl

Elizabeth Slusher

Reanna Schnubel

Lisa Saguto

Stephanie Roa

Mary Jo Rufo

D'Quondre Gadson

Kaylea Gassaway

Christy Salinari

Abby Barnes

Shelby Mullins

Dylan Boston

Francesca Solano

Taylor Moon

Cory Cribb

Katelin Gandee

Brendan Cullen

Rebecca Roberts

Spring Semester 2017

Caitlyn Hinnerschitz  

Melanie Masciarelli    

Lizzy Mottola

Wyatt Davies

Samantha Fallon

Kasandra Young

Katie Estabrook

Kevellin Sanders

Cloé Bourdages 

TJ Kilbride

Broderick Daniel

Darien Mayes

Alice Riley

Noah Whitlock

Maggie Head

Moira Murphy

Ashley Pribble

LaQuasha Brown

Dalton Hedrick

Hanah Stoudt

Emily Gore

Veronica Xifaras-Piva

Maddy Saunders

Lina Nelson

Leroy Simmons

Lauren Lettiere

Brooks Leibee

Kae Huang

Emily Rossi

Brittany Alford

Alex Symcak

Blake Graham

Bessie Wilson

Taylor Dawsey

Megan O'Shea

Lexi Flynn

Halice Schoonover

Kyla Hilty

Tyrone McKenney

Jakayla Bailey

Louis Coppola

Kelly Kapur

Gabrielle Poston

Whitney Hawkes


Fall Semester 2016

Deontre’ Wynn

Jessica Hughes

Tessa Calhoun 

Brandon Brown

Taylor Anderson

Miranda Gilkerson

Theresa Calabrese

Jared Glass

Kelly McConnaughey

Alichia Leavy

Jarius Mcmillian

Deej Inge

Meghan Gianforte

Jamal Lucas

Lindsey Hanks

Ross Kunmann

Mariah Ellis

Ryan Davis

Ashlynn Solomon

Samantha Schoener

Rice Fazio

Alex English

Megan Foster

John Simcox

Madeline Morgan

Cassidy Brown

Devon Brownlee

Shayla Anderson

Morgan Howder

J.P. McLaurin

Red Woodford

Meghan Hess

Malcolm Albino

Becky Krivanek

Jordan Gobble

Lizeth Alcantar

Ethan Olkovikas

Monica Trepiccione

Ashley Shaw

Taylor Landis

Jessica Meenaghan

Ashley Sanders

Hunter Queen 


The official logo of 2016 #CCUfamily


Coastal Carolina University is proud to present one of our most popular social media features, #CCUfamily. During the 2016-17 academic year, three students will be highlighted per week. Features will be published on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Students will be featured across the official social media channels of Coastal Carolina University and on this website.

Students and staff featured are nominated by a member of the Coastal community. If you have questions about this campaign or would like to nominate a student or an alumnus or alumna, please contact Brent Reser