Class of 2014
Director of Higher Education and Workforce at the Dallas Regional Chamber
B.A. Political Science, Texas Christian University
My current job is the very first time in my career that I have not worked for a higher education institution. My background was always working with students directly in Student Affairs through housing, conduct, and service-learning activities. It wasn’t until my time in the SMU Higher Education Masters program that I had the opportunity to explore the many faucets of a career in Higher Education both on and off of a traditional college or university campus. Through the individualized academic opportunities in the program, I found mentorship from one of the top Higher Education faculty in the country who introduced me to the possibility of combining two of my passions: Higher Education and Public Policy. Finding my niche in Higher Education Public Policy slingshotted my career down a path of passion, dedication, and excitement that led me to quite literally my ‘dream job.’ Just a few short weeks before my graduation at SMU, I accepted the opportunity to work for the Dallas Regional Chamber on Higher Education public policy and have been advocating for college access, completion, and affordability on behalf of the business community to state legislators ever since!
Class of 2014
Hunt Leadership Scholars Program Director
B.B.A., Entrepreneurial Management, B.A., Theatre, Texas Christian University
I started my career in higher education as an Admission Counselor at Texas Christian University in 2010. After two years in this role, I realized that I absolutely loved working in higher education, but wanted more prolonged student contact than the admission field allows. That being said, I knew I would need an M.Ed. to find the kind of role that allowed me to develop long-term, meaningful relationships with a group of students. SMU and Simmons were a natural fit given my love for mid-sized, private universities (and the fact that my husband is a proud Mustang), and I loved the high degree of student-faculty interaction that is valued so much here. I started the M.Ed. program at the same time as I started my first position at SMU: Program Coordinator for the Hunt Leadership Scholars Program. Since 2012, I have worked my way from Program Coordinator to Assistant Director, and now to the role of Director. Having an M.Ed. from Simmons set me up to hold a role previously held only by faculty members, which is pretty cool. I think my graduate work prepared me for my position because of the wide variety of topics I was able to research: governance, student development, finance; they all come into play daily in my job. Having such a well-rounded education degree has made me feel more confident when interfacing with various departments on campus, and has allowed me to find a position I absolutely love at an institution that I care about so deeply.