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Collegiate Success Institute
CSI Student Staff

Ashley Schantz

Ashley Schantz, NODA Graduate Intern
Undergrad Major: Clinical Psychology
Grad Program: Western Illinois University


Why did you want to be one of the Graduate Interns for the CSI Program?

The CSI Program at UMBC is a great opportunity for incoming students to jump right into the college life. Through this program students have the opportunity to meet and build relationships with their peers. They experience college classes. Students also learn what it means to be involved in their campus and the community around them. I could not pass up an opportunity to work with such an amazing program and wonderful students. This program is a fantastic way to have fun, connect with various people and resources, and learn how to successfully navigate collegiate curriculum, both inside and outside of the classroom.

What was the most interesting thing that happened during your own experience in college (be appropriate)?

Upon reflection, the most interesting and valuable experience of my college experience was learning how to learn. My undergraduate years were the beginnings of becoming a self-directed learner. I developed a true passion for knowledge and connection to the world around me. This experience occurred not only through the traditional academic coursework, but also through my involvement on campus in various leadership roles. It has been incredible to see all of the opportunities available to me as a result of this investment in my college community.

What do you think will be your favorite part of the CSI Program this summer?

Do I have to choose JUST one? I don’t know if I can! I am truly looking forward to knowing the students involved with the program. It is going to be so much fun spending time with these students as they learn about their classes, serve our community, and explore the surrounding urban culture.

Would you recommend CSI to new UMBC students? Why or why not?

If you are able and interested in participating in CSI you should certainly take advantage of the opportunity. CSI provides a unique occasion to become invested in the UMBC community and your education from the very beginning. You will get to know fellow first year students, experience college courses, and learn about your new communities. Many of the friendships made will be life-long. The advantages gained during CSI will shape your experiences in college and beyond.

How did you hear about the Collegiate Success Institute (CSI) Summer Program?

I came across the CSI Summer Program at UMBC through an internship search offered through NODA, a national association for orientation, transition, and retention for higher education.

Tell us a few interesting things about yourself…?

I am a nontraditional graduate student. Coming back to graduate school marked a significant career change for me. I had already received an advanced degree in Clinical Psychology and had been working as a therapist for a few years. However, my heart was in the college experience. It is a time for significant growth and development that, for me, is unmatched by any other transitional period. I have clear passion for learning and college life. I am also interested in issues of equity and inclusion. I believe that significant and lasting change can occur through subtle daily interactions. When I am not working or taking classes, I am likely to be reading books like Harry Potter and Divergent, watching Netflix, cooking, working out, or seeking new adventures.


For more Information, Please Contact:

Laila Shishineh

Assistant Director

Administration Bldg. Rm. 905 | (410) 455-3737