Meet Angela, the University Center’s recently hired Associate Director. Angela came to us from Carroll University, where she gained experience in building management, supervision, student life, and countless other arenas by serving in a variety of roles including Associate Director of Campus Center Operations. She has also been very active in ACUI, the Association of College Unions International. Read on to learn more about Angela’s first weeks here at UW-Whitewater and her experience thus far:
Name: Angela Meldonian
Position in the UC: Associate Director of the University Center
Dates worked: February 2015-Present
Ice cream flavor: Mint Chocolate Chip
Childhood toy: Softball glove
Disney movie: Mary Poppins (even seen Mary Poppins on Broadway)
Quote: “You were made to be awesome.” – Kid President
What made you want to apply to work in the James R. Connor University Center?
I have worked in Student Affairs for about 8 years and really enjoyed every minute of it, even the ups and downs. I feel like I have grown as a person because of my career choice. I love that I can keep a connection to the “younger generation,” and students challenge me in ways I never thought possible. My past experience had been at smaller, private institutions and I felt I was ready to move to a larger public institution. My responsibilities at Carroll University really prepared me to take the next steps in my career. When this job opportunity came along, I really wanted to give it a shot. I had great experiences the few times I visited UW-Whitewater for various events and meetings. In addition, I got to know the University Center staff through my involvement with ACUI (Association of College Unions International) which helped me grow a deeper appreciation for UW-W. I was ready to start a new chapter in my life and felt that UW-W would be a great next step for me both personally and professionally. The older you get, the less it becomes about the job itself and more about making sure it is a good fit for both you and the institution.
What was your first impression of the UW-Whitewater campus?
I had been to the UW-Whitewater campus a few times before applying for this position. I love the atmosphere. I think it is vibrant and full of life. One of my favorite things to do throughout the day is to walk through the University Center and see the various interactions that are taking place. No two days are the same and this is something I love about having a career in higher education!
Which of your job responsibilities are you most excited about?
I am excited for some new challenges that this position will bring me. I am excited to get connected with students and continue to enhance their experience here while helping them to prepare for life after college. One of things I love most about working in higher education is the ability to see a student grow. I get a thrill every time a student has a “Eureka” moment where you can see through their expression that a light bulb has just turned on for them!
What’s your most prized possession in your office? Why?
I really need to decorate my office! Once I bring all my stuff in, there are two things that really mean a lot to me. One is my diploma for my masters from UW-Milwaukee. I graduated in August of 2010 with a Masters in Science in Administrative Leadership in Higher Education Administration (yes I know that is a mouth full). I worked three jobs throughout graduate school and graduated with a 3.9 so it is a reminder to myself that if you continue to work hard, things will pay off! Secondly, I am a huge Milwaukee Brewers fan. I have a picture that captures the moment before I was able to throw out the first pitch at a Milwaukee Brewers game in 2012. I was selected to represent Carroll University and Pepsi. There is nothing more terrifying than seeing your face on the jumbo Tron! Oh yeah, and eventually my office will be filled with my bobble head collection!
What accomplishment are you most proud of outside of work?
The biggest accomplishment that I am most proud of outside of work is obtaining my master’s degree. Ask me again in 10 years…hopefully by then I will have started (or completed) my Ed.D or Ph.d.