Tagged: faculty

01 Oct

Comments Off on 3 Ways to Stand Out to Your Professors

3 Ways to Stand Out to Your Professors

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By Pascal Kadamani

One of the most important parts of college is making connections and developing relationships with the people you interact with, including your professors! I know how nerve wrecking it might be to approach them at first, but I promise you won’t regret it.  All they want is to be there for you, and they can in so many ways. (i.e. assist you in coursework, write letters of recommendation, and help you grow your network). But before they can do all these things, they need to know who you are – and not just by your name being on the class roster. So here are 3 ways that I have used to try to stand out and create strong relationships with my professors: 

  • Introduce yourself at the beginning of the semester: Just like how it’s your first day of school, it’s their first day too! By showing up a little early to the first class of the semester, introducing yourself, and exchanging some small conversation, this opens the door to easily saying hello and goodbye during class (manners matter). This forces the professor to know who you are, along with how polite you are. 

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29 Nov

Comments Off on Meet the Mount: Dr. Frances Spielhagen

Meet the Mount: Dr. Frances Spielhagen

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In our “Meet the Mount” series, we’ll be highlighting some of the Mount’s people – our students, faculty, staff, and alumni – who make this college the wonderful community it is.

Dr. Frances (Fran) Spielhagen, Professor of Education and Director of the Center for Adolescent Research and Development


Title: Professor of Education and Director of the the Center for Adolescent Research and Development (CARD)

Campus involvement: CARD, Teach the Change, Teacher Opportunity Corps

Years at the Mount: 16

Division: Division of Education

Favorite spot on campus: Lobby in Hudson Hall and the Chapel of the Most Holy Rosary

One word to describe the Mount: Nurturing

People are often surprised to learn that Dr. Frances Spielhagen has “only” been at the Mount for 16 years, as the work that she has done for and with the Mount community has quickly made her a pillar of the institution.

After working as a public high school teacher in New York and New Jersey for 30 years, Dr. Spielhagen earned a doctoral degree in teacher education and knew right away that she wanted to become part of the faculty at the Mount. She had known about the Mount for some time and had even helped some of her high school students get admitted to the college. “I was always impressed with how smoothly my students made the transition to this college, and once I joined the faculty, I understood why,” she explained. “We care about our students as individuals here!  We are passionate about our work and sharing our knowledge, but the bottom line is that the individual students are our focus, and they know that.”

She prides herself on knowing not just about her students’ learning styles and career goals, but also who they are as individuals outside of class. “This helps me understand who they are and how I can best help them grow into the people they are meant to be,” she explained. Continue Reading

25 Nov

Comments Off on MFY Faculty Flashback: Christina Alvey

MFY Faculty Flashback: Christina Alvey

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Every other week, the My First Year blog will be sharing stories of faculty so that our freshman students can get to know their professors a bit better and hear some of their advice for new students.

Christina Alvey, Assistant Professor of Mathematics

As an undergraduate I attended North Central College, a small liberal arts school close to home in Illinois. While I was able to graduate in only three years due to the large number of credits I earned while in high school, I took advantage of so many opportunities during this time, including a semester-long study abroad experience in Moscow, Russia. I also worked with some of my professors on research projects that ultimately inspired me to pursue graduate school in mathematics and become a professor myself. After earning a PhD in mathematics at Purdue University, I am now entering my fourth year at Mount Saint Mary College as an Assistant Professor of Mathematics and couldn’t be happier! When I am not teaching, I enjoy playing cooperative board games and video games. I am also a member of a local square dance club, and wrote my undergraduate honors thesis on the mathematics of square dancing, something that most students probably don’t know about me! Continue Reading

16 Nov

Comments Off on MFY Faculty Flashback: James Phillips

MFY Faculty Flashback: James Phillips

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Every other week, the My First Year blog will be sharing stories of faculty so that our freshman students can get to know their professors a bit better and hear some of their advice for new students.

James Phillips, Associate Professor of Theatre

Years at the Mount: 10

What was your college experience like? I was busy. I took classes in the morning, worked in the theatre shop in the afternoon, and went to rehearsals at night. That started my first week on campus and continued for almost every week I was in college. I quickly learned how to work and how to budget my time.

What are your hobbies/what do you like to do outside of work? I’m the father of an Irish dancer, so my main hobby is spending money on her dance supplies. I play video games, mostly strategy as I’m past the age when my hand/eye coordination allows me to play fast twitch games. I’m humbled by my inability to garden well.

What is one thing most students don’t know about you? I sang in a cover band while in high school. Continue Reading

02 Nov

Comments Off on MFY Faculty Flashback: Sarah Uzelac

MFY Faculty Flashback: Sarah Uzelac

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Every other week, the My First Year blog will be sharing stories of faculty so that our freshman students can get to know their professors a bit better and hear some of their advice for new students.

Sarah Uzelac, Professor of Psychology, Division Chair

Years at the Mount: 13

What was your college experience like? Fantastic – I loved college so much I never want to leave!

What are your hobbies/what do you like to do outside of work? I’m a big reader, so if I’m not grading exams or papers, I’m usually reading for pleasure. I also like gardening and cooking. We travel as a family a lot. And I’m a horseback rider – I keep my horse at a barn in Wappingers Falls and try to ride a few times a week.

What is one thing most students don’t know about you? I married my high school sweetheart!

What does a successful student look like in your class? A successful student in my classes is one who comes prepared, shows their interest, and asks questions during our class meetings.

How do you break the ice with or begin building a relationship with your professor during the first few weeks of class? We spend a big part of our first class meeting introducing ourselves to each other and I try to use humor and personal anecdotes to help students feel comfortable in my classes. Continue Reading