Name: Sarah Mayer
School: Bay Path University
Program: Higher Education Administration
Current employer: Labouré College as an Administrative Assistant and LPN-RN Program Coordinator
What do you love about working there?
We have a very unique population of students that consist of mainly non-traditional age women coming back to college to pursue a higher education. A lot of our students have overcome tremendous odds to pursue a degree in Nursing, which is even more commendable in our current healthcare situation in this nation. These men and women inspire me everyday because they see how frightening it is to be a healthcare worker in this new COVID-19 world, yet they are diving into the field, head first. It’s incredibly rewarding to work with this specific population of students even more so now in this unprecedented time we are currently living in.
How do you like to spend your free time?
I really enjoy cooking in my spare time. Being stuck at home right now I’ve really pushed myself to be more adventurous in my culinary endeavors.
What is your favorite grad school course/experience and why?
My favorite course would have to be my Women in Higher Education course. Women in Higher Education was extremely enlightening to the unique needs of women in higher education, specifically how we can really be receiving an incomplete education as many college courses are taught solely from a male perspective, often by a male professor, with systemically sexist undertones that many of us are not even aware of. This course emphasized the value of female perspective and how it should be used to shape all fields in higher education (and society at large) to be more progressive and inclusive.
Who/what inspired you to get involved in higher education?
I did have a lot of encouragement from family and friends, but I really pushed myself to go back for my master’s in higher education administration because I was feeling uninspired in my previous career field and always felt a natural pull towards higher education since I first attended my undergraduate school, Rhode Island College. I worked there while attending classes and didn’t realize until a few years after graduating that higher education is where my passions truly exist.
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned in your career (so far)?
Voice your opinion! Even if you feel like the lowest person in the hierarchy of your institution, your perspective is a valuable asset, no matter your position. If an institution’s executives do not see that, they’re missing out on an opportunity to grow and become more efficient and effective.
What is on your Higher Ed bucket list?
I definitely plan on going back to school for my doctorate. I’ve come this far and I need to go all the way!
What advice would you offer to those who are starting to search for grad programs?
In this day and age, find a school that has experience working in an online setting. Higher education is already seeing a massive shift in its structure and an institution that is already well-versed in completely online learning is going to set you up to be successful.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Please wear your mask and listen to healthcare workers! My institution can only graduate so many nurses so fast to combat this pandemic and thank you nurses everywhere! You are the real superheros in the world today!
Do you have someone you’d like to be featured as NECPA’s graduate student of the month? Nominate them here!