Senior Associate Director of Admissions
Goucher College (MD)
How did you get your start in the college admission field?
I owe my start in college admission to Robert Merritt, who was the director of admissions at Randolph-Macon Woman’s College (VA). We first met during a college fair at my high school. I never heard of R-MWC or Lynchburg, VA, but his warm and inviting demeanor and attentiveness in helping me through the application process convinced me to apply ED. During my first year, I worked in the admission office for my work-study job. Little did I know Mr. Merritt had a hand in this and, unknowingly or knowingly, planted the seed for my eventual career in college admission. My time in college included being a tour guide, studying abroad for a year in England, and embracing R-MWC traditions. During the last semester of my senior year, I was encouraged to apply for the admission counselor opening. What a great idea! My experience at R-MWC was life changing and I felt young women like me should have the same opportunities as I did. After three years at my alma mater, it became apparent I really liked what I was doing and so my journey continued on to Randolph-Macon College, followed by Coppin State University (MD). In 1995, I began working at Goucher College (MD) and 24 years later, I’m still here! It’s hard to imagine 30+ years have passed since my random meeting with Mr. Merritt, but when what you do brings joy and fulfillment, time will fly by!
What is your favorite part of the job?
In the beginning, it was having the opportunity to travel around the country and abroad to meet with students, their families, and counselors letting them know the benefits of an R-MWC experience. As I progressed through the profession, I began to realize what it means to be an admission counselor and the importance of my role in guiding students through the process. I thought of what Mr. Merritt did for me and now it was my turn to pay it forward.
How has NACAC played a role in your career?
Since 1989, NACAC has been a constant companion during my professional growth in college admission. My first foray into the profession was during the PCACAC annual conference in Ocean City, MD. The friendliness and support I experienced during the conference let me know this was rewarding profession to pursue. Over time, I took on a number of leadership roles with PCACAC, including serving as President in 2007 – 2008. My involvement with PCACAC led me to chair the National College Fair Committee and to serve as co-chair of the 2009 NACAC Conference Local Arrangements Committee. That was a fun experience! Through it all, NACAC has blessed me with numerous opportunities to be mentored by leaders in our profession, start great friendships that continue to this day, and become a better admission counselor.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing our profession today?
The changing perspective of higher education and the value of a liberal arts education; the demographic change of students going to college; and the increasing cost of a college education.
When you aren’t working, what do you like to do?
When I’m not being a homebody binge-watching all the Marvel and Harry Potter movies, you can find me cruising to the Caribbean (my favorite type of vacation); hitting Bingo World and casinos with my mom; hanging out with family and friends, and most importantly, being the best human I can possibly be for my 12-year-old pug, Howdy. And come football season, it’s all about the Baltimore Ravens!
If you could be any fictional character, who would it be and why?
Okoye, General of the Dora Milaje (Black Panther). She’s a master in the martial arts, fearless, loyal, and can work a spear while wearing a gorgeous red dress and heels.
Describe yourself in five words.
Compassionate, encouraging, optimistic, hopeful, and resilient.
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