Darnyelle Jervey '97 AS

Darnyelle Jervey is many things: author, speaker, business coach, consultant and marketing expert. But one thing she is most of all is alive. Born to crack-addicted parents in the 1970s, Darnyelle struggled with health complications at an early age. Doctors said that if she survived, she would never experience life as most do.

Despite tough odds, Darnyelle took control of her life and her destiny, and became the first of seven children to attend college.

“It was at University of Delaware that I came into my own,” she explains. “Being the first of my siblings to attend college was an eye-opening experience. I gained the confidence to dream big.”

Darnyelle’s road to success began on the University of Delaware campus, where she studied English, held leadership roles in the Cultural Programming Advisory Board and Zeta Phi Beta, and frequented The Center for Black Culture.

“The Center for Black Culture was home away from home,” Darnyelle says. “There, upperclassmen mentored younger students. There was love, laughter and empowerment moving through the rooms at the center.”

After graduation, Darnyelle skyrocketed to the top in just three years, securing her spot as one of the leading sales executives in the nation for Mary Kay Cosmetics and earning not one, but two Mary Kay pink Cadillacs. In June 2008, Darnyelle transitioned to entrepreneurship and opened her coaching and consulting business, Incredible One Enterprises LLC, in South Newark.

“I knew that with the right education, I could live the life I always dreamed of,” she says. “UD taught me about the value of hard work, and that the pay-off is greater confidence, good relationships, and goals accomplished.”

Darnyelle, who also received her MBA in Marketing and Management from Goldey Beacom College, urges current undergraduates to make the best of their time at UD.

“Maximize every opportunity to expand your network,” she advises. “Set your vision, and back it up with a plan so that you can be the best ‘you’ beyond your time at UD.”