Tory Watson Longshore

My Clemson story started when I was born in 1982! From the day I was born, I had orange blood. Like many other Tigers, I am a legacy Tiger. Both of my grandfathers graduated from Clemson (’41 and ’44). My dad and mom met at Clemson. My dad was on the swim team and had several records during his time there! Three of my Aunts/Uncles attended. I am one of six kids–and four of us went to Clemson! Along with several cousins! So we truly are a Clemson family.

I was lucky enough to grow up going to Clemson football games with my family and grandfather. He served on the IPTAY board for several years. We moved from Charleston, SC up to Richmond, VA when I was little. And my friends couldn’t understand our passion for Clemson University. Everyone talked of the great rivalry between Virginia and Virginia Tech. They had no idea what a true rivalry looked like – I talked constantly of Big Thursday and the Clemson/Carolina rivalry!

No one was more shocked than me that when I got to Clemson, I suffered from extreme homesickness. I was finally at my dream school! I was a Clemson Tiger! And yet, all I wanted to do was go back to Virginia. My first semester was miserable and I wanted to transfer to Virginia Tech. My parents and siblings were so supportive and came down as much as they could. They urged me to finish my freshman year. And thank God I did!

During my second semester of my freshman year, I got involved. I volunteered for the Student Alumni Association. I worked for the Athletic Department. I joined my church’s college group. Slowly but surely, I fell back in love with Clemson.

By the time I graduated in 2005, I held three jobs (Athletics, Alumni Office & Fike Recreation Center), I was on the board of the Student Alumni Council, a member of Blue Key, the ASL Club, and of Tiger Brotherhood. I was having so much fun, that I didn’t want to leave (like most students). And being so involved led me to change my mind on my career. I decided to stay at Clemson and get a Masters of Education in Student Affairs. I wanted to work on a college campus and help students make the most of their college experience!

I feel truly blessed to be a part of the Clemson Family. It is one of a kind. After graduating in 2007, I was having trouble finding a job. One opened at that “other” school in South Carolina. And I took it. I learned a lot there and met some amazing people. It really is a good school. But it only highlighted how amazing Clemson is and it only grew my love for my alma mater!

Clemson is where I met my husband. It’s where I became friends with some of the most amazing people. I grew up at Clemson. I found my passion at Clemson.

I continue to be an active Clemson alumni. I served on the Young Alumni Council and am on the board of the Richmond Clemson Club. I will always stay involved because I love my Clemson family!

Enjoy your time at Clemson–savor every minute of it.