Interesting Fact about yourself: At my UMBC new student orientation I won a shirt for singing the school song enthusiastically.
Are you involved on-campus: I am. I’m leading an Alternative School Break service trip to the Gesundheit Institute over spring break, and I’m also on the Ethics Bowl team. Our team is a 4-year qualifier for the national ethics bowl competition. I also participate in the Shriver Center’s service-learning program, so I volunteer every week at a rehabilitation facility that works with people who have MS (MS Swim).
What do you like about working at the Financial Aid Office: I think most people are fulfilled by a job that serves others, but financial aid does that in a particular way. In a large part we’re the intermediary between the government and students, but I like to think that we play an integral role in helping people go to college. I know I couldn’t attend UMBC without financial aid, and there’s something really substantial in being able to help people better themselves. In my mind, education is a right, and UMBC makes that possible for thousands of students every year. That’s why I work here. We do good things.
What advice would you offer to students about financial aid/the office: Don’t put it off. It’s not like a class where you can blow off your homework all semester and still get a good grade. This stuff is serious. The process is long, and it can be difficult to keep track of what’s going on. The best thing you can do is to complete the FAFSA as soon as possible, turn in your documents if we request them, and utilize our website to educate yourself. Before I worked in financial aid, I was frustrated that things seemed so complicated, and I blamed the office for it. The truth is that things are complicated, but you can protect yourself by going on our website and learning exactly what you need to do to get the most money possible.