VOLUME 19 #3

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Jim Soles changed my life

Alumni and others whose lives were touched share their memories and thoughts.

Joe Asher, AS90

There are so many things I could say about Jim Soles, but I'll give you just a few memories.

I remember the first extended conversation I had with Dr. Soles, way back in 1987 when I was a communications major taking PSC 105. I stopped by his office to see my exam grade, which was posted on his door. He was there and asked how I did. I said that I got an A. He asked my name, I answered, and then he said in that great Southern drawl, "Come on in, Joe Asher." I left an hour later and soon became a political science major, he became my adviser, and we became lifelong friends.

Toward the end of undergraduate years at UD, I was trying to decide whether to go to law school or get a Ph.D. and become a college professor, so I went to see Dr. Soles. We talked it over a while and then he said, "You should go to law school because with a law degree you will always be able to support yourself, and if anyone ever tells you to do something you don't want to do, you will have the ability to say 'no.'" It sounded like good advice at the time and I did go to law school, but it was nearly 20 years later that I truly understood the wisdom of his words when that scenario happened in business and I said "no." And, then I called Dr. Soles and told him I now understood how important his advice was.

I'll always treasure those drives to the beach for "the Seminar," a twice a year weekend for a group of Soles disciples. The hour and a half or two hours of drive time gave us plenty of time to catch up, and the weekends of Dr. Soles holding court, dispensing advice and all of us having a great time together, will be cherished as long as I live.


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