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Faculty Profiles

Raji Baradwaj

Ms. Raji J. Baradwaj
Senior Lecturer, Department of Mathematics and Statistics

How long have you been at UMBC?
I have been here since 2001.

Why did you choose to have a Y section associated with your course MATH 106?
Math, especially algebra, is a subject that many students do not have a strong foundation in. Some are even afraid of math. I want to make sure that my students know about all the resources available on campus. Many of the students in this course are freshmen and have to get used to the way of teaching in college. I think the IHU helps them to be comfortable and to know that they are not alone here. I think I started teaching this Math 106Y in 2003.

What connections do you have with students outside the classroom?
Students are always welcome to stop by my office to ask questions.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am easily approachable. Students should seek my help if they are having any problem. I am there to help them.

Ms. Baradwaj will be teaching Math 106Y: Algebra and Elementary Functions.


Holly Bielak

Holly Bielak
Instructional Technology Specialist, Division of Information Technology

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2014.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I am a UMBC alumni and want to share my experiences with others. In the past, I have worked as a high school teacher and then taught at various institutions of higher education for over four years. I think it is very important that students feel comfortable and and confident in navigating the college experience.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I have a vast amount of experience training others how to use educational technologies. Sometimes, students feel unprepared when they come to college and things go “online”. Since we don’t offer scheduled student training or support at this time, I can help provide students with a foundation for navigating the campus and Blackboard for academic success.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
College is a completely different landscape than high school. IHU courses can provide the students with study techniques and skills that will help them be successful at UMBC and beyond.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Embrace the college experience and learn as much as you can so that you will be prepared for life after college.


Ricardo Boulware

Ricardo Jay Boulware
Associate Director, Transportation Services

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2014.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I am a mentor, teacher, supervisor, friend and most of all, a reliable source of information. I enjoy building and maintaining relationships that will last a lifetime. I was a first-generation college student and would like to help others making that transition.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I will be able to instruct students about how to work through challenges and adversity, while keeping a positive outlook and always seeking alternatives to accomplishing a task. Patience is key and being curious while in a new environment is just as important.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Some significant challenges First-Year Studnets are facing today are homesickness, feeling disconnected, struggling to develop habits such as time management, prioritization and staying healthy and acclimating to academic expectations that may be more challenging than anticipated. The IHU course will provide the students the resources and tools necessary to make a connection and really call UMBC home.


Patricia Bozic
Lecturer, English

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2012.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Transferring to UMBC represents an exciting opportunity for students. I have a strong interest in helping support students going through that transition. I believe that this is a process of discovery.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
In addition to university teaching, I have also worked as an SAT tutor for the English/Writing section of the test; a core component covered study skills, time management and test preparation skills. In addition, I have taught a variety of lifelong learning courses.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
How will I fit in? What are the differences between UMBC’s academic expectations and my previous school?

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Get the big picture of what the university is about, first, by spending some time researching the many resources available for both personal and professional growth UMBC has to offer, ranging from student clubs to the Career Center. Then narrow down the list to explore the resources that are relevant to your own goals.


Kathy Bryan
Lecturer, American Studies

Ms. Bryan will be teaching AMST 100Y – Introduction to American Studies.


Leslie Carter
Business Manager, Student Affairs Business Services Center

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2014.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I love learning and working with people to help them be their best selves.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
In my job, I motivate, encourage, and develop people and can share these skills with students.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
The most significant challenges for students are managing their time and making sound decisions.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Ask for help, ask questions, ask for advice, just ask.


Dr. Nicole Cousin-Gossett
Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology and Anthropology

How long have you been at UMBC?
Five years

Why did you choose to have a Y section associated with your course?
I want to see UMBC students succeed. I believe that a Y section is a fantastic way for new UMBC students to become acquainted with the university and gain knowledge that will help them succeed as college students.

What connections do you have with students outside the classroom?
One of the most rewarding things for me about teaching is getting to know my students. It is always a joy when students want to continue a scholarly discussion outside of the classroom. I have also had the pleasure of working with numerous undergraduates and graduate students on individualized projects, theses, and dissertations.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am truly passionate about sociology! I aspire as an instructor to pass some of that passion on to my students.

Dr. Cousin-Gossett will be teaching SOCY 101Y: Basic Concepts in Sociology.


Alice Crogan
Assistant Director of Marketing, Institutional Advancement

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2012.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Serving as an IHU instructor is a continuation of the work I do in recruitment marketing. It’s about being a part of the promise and vision that UMBC students receive the experience and education that is celebrated at UMBC.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Understanding the ways that college success is different and more challenging than high school success. College is about discovering new ways to connect, learn, and grow.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Get connected with the faculty AND staff. Their wisdom, guidance, and connections can open a lot of doors for years to come.


Dr. Meryl Damasiewicz
Adjunct Faculty, Department of Sociology and Anthropology

How long have you been at UMBC?
I started teaching at UMBC in August 2008 and have been here ever since! I also earned my graduate degree here in Applied Sociology in the 1990s.

Why did you choose to have a Y section associated with your course SOCY101?
I’ve been teaching SOCY101 with an IHU section for several years. I love the Y section as it allows students to form a genuine connection with the University and it allows them to develop relationships with classmates and to network with others who they might not easily encounter and are often a wealth of knowledge.

What connections do you have with students outside the classroom?
Because I teach SOCY 101 I have been able to watch students grow and mature as they go through their educational careers. I also get to work directly with those who have been selected as peer mentors for the course. As faculty we get to wear a variety of different hats when working with students!

Dr. Damasiewicz will be teaching SOCY 101Y: Basic Concepts in Sociology.


Ernest Evans

Ernest Evans
Coordinator, Off-Campus Student Services

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2015.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I am invested in the success of our students here at UMBC. I have a passion for working with first year students and facilitating the transition from high school to college. Teching this course will connect me to students outside of commuters. It will also assist me with reaching more commuter students to inform them of our services and possible opportunities for them as student workers.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Adjusting to the work load of college.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Get involved in student organizations both inside and outside of your major.


Keith Evans

Keith Evans
Research Analyst, Joint Center for Earth Systems Technology

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 1998.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I would like to teach and want to gain confidence in my teaching ability.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am a Buddhist and respect all kinds of people. I feel that teaching is the best thing I can do to make the world a better place.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
They don’t know anybody, they don’t know how to study, they don’t have enough confidence in themselves, and they may feel lost in the university environment.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Be confident in yourself. Don’t be intimidated by the subject material. It just requires some work to study or ask questions to gain an understanding of the subject matter. Genius is not a talent, it’s work.


Ashley Fullwood
Coordinator, Financial Aid and Scholarships

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2012.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
This is a great learning experience and a chance to help students in a different way.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I have a friendly and enthusiastic personality. I understand that learning styles vary from person to person and have an open-mind when it comes to trying various teaching methods in order to benefit the students’ needs.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Adjusting from high school where teachers, administrators, and parents are more hands-on and involved in the students’ day-to-day progress to college where they are required to be more independent, responsible, and self-motivated.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Don’t be afraid to utilize all of the resources available to you as a student. College is hard and no one expects you to be able to be successful by doing things all on your own.


Abigail Granger
Program Management Specialist, Media and Communication Studies

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2011.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Serving as an IHU/TRS instructor will give me better insight into the new student experience, which would make me a more proficient academic advisor and an improved sources of support for our new MCS majors.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
It is important to me to make new students feel as welcome and in tune to UMBC as possible. I’ve spent the better part of the last ten years here at UMBC in various capacities and my wonderful experiences have shaped me into who I will be for the rest of my life; I want everyone who chooses UMBC to feel the same sense of belonging and purpose that I do.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Connecting with the resources on campus, such as the Learning Resources Center, Career Services, Student Support Services, Transit, etc. and setting up the infrastructure needed to succeed in college.

Tips for a new student at UMBC?
Talk to the person behind you in line at Starbucks or sitting next to you in class, talk to your RA, chat with a reference librarian, go to involvement fest and interact with the various organizations of interest to you, get to know the staff/advisors (not just the faculty!) in your major. To the extent that you are able, connect and start to build your own community on campus.


Jim Hague

Jim Hague
Coordinator, Residential Life

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2013.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
To interact with students outside of my work while supporting their success and transition to UMBC.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
As a professional and as an instructor, I am approachable and student-oriented.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Academic efficacy: students come to UMBC with various expectations of the academic rigor, course work and time/energy needed.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Happiness lies at the intersection of doing what you like, what you’re good at, and what makes a difference in the world. Get the most out of UMBC and allow it to help you find that intersection.


Samirah Hassan

Samirah Hassan
Administrative Assistant II, Interdisciplinary Studies

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2010.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
To gain professional experience at implementing a proper curriculum in a formal classroom setting.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
The lifestyle change of the transition from high school or community college into a university setting and management of stress and anxiety.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
I would encourage students to use technology to keep organized and well-informed about events at UMBC.


Liz Hilinski
Assistant Director, Undergraduate Admissions and Orientation

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2008.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Having supervised and coached undergraduate students over the years, I am interested in expanding my experience and interactions with students in a new and exciting environment.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am patient, flexible, perceptive, and a quick learner. I work hard to undertsand who I am training/working with and how I can best compliment and motivate them.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Because of UMBC’s academic focus, students who are not so sure of their career passions often feel left out. On the other hand, students who are driven feel immediate pressure to take their studies to the next level. Considering these two extremes, it is important for students to understand that there is enough time to experience all of these things but also understand that it is equally fine to take their time, explore different areas and truly hone their interests.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Get involved! Not just in clubs or organizations but in everything and everyone. The more people you meet and the more experiences you have, the better you will know yourself and better understand where you want life to take you.


William J. Klotz, Jr.
Graduate Research Assistant for INTERACT, Division of Student Affairs

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2009.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
As a former UMBC student, I believe this would be a great opportunity to assist new students in adjustment to university life here on campus.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am highly-involved, energetic, and I am interested in being a teacher/professor in the future.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Culture shock. Many of our students have a hard time adjusting to the culture of UMBC as well as the academic rigor.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
One tip I wish I knew as a freshman was what it really means to withdraw or drop a class and that if you are not doing well and took on too much, that it is okay to withdraw and take the class later.


Galina Madjaroff

Galina Madjaroff communicates a passion for teaching through her efforts to innovate in the classroom, utilize technology effectively, and create a positive learning environment. She is a graduate of the Erickson School’s Management of Aging Services M.A. program and serves as Clinical Assistant Professor, mentor to undergraduate students, and Undergraduate Program Director for the Erickson School’s Management of Aging Services Program. Ms. Madjaroff is also engaged in research to improve the lives of older adults through the use of technology. Her deep interest in technological innovation and cross-cultural perspective, along with her awareness and knowledge of the salient issues in aging, management, and policy, contribute to her research and teaching.

Ms. Madjaroff will be teaching AGNG 100Y: So You Say You Want a Revolution: How Boomers are Revolutionizing Aging, and AGNG 200Y: Aging People, Policy and Management.


Colleen Marquart

Colleen Marquart
Transfer STEM Coordinator, Office of Undergraduate Education

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2013.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
To be connected to students within a classroom setting.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
For any new student, transition to a new environment is big. Especially transitioning to UMBC, the transition is about norming a culture of academics, such as tutoring, study groups, research, and also finding new social groups.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Study abroad! Putting yourself outside your comfort zone is where we all learn more about ourselves and grow into the society that can one day help support systemic change.


Kelli McClelland
Project Coordinator, Office of the Provost

How long have you been at UMBC?
I started at UMBC as a graduate student in 2009. After I completed my graduate studies, I taught elementary school for 2 years. In 2014, I returned to UMBC in my current position.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Through my work with transfer student success, counseling, case management, and elementary education, I understand the importance of support in life transitions.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
My classroom is a safe space to share ideas and explore content.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
First year students at UMBC are inundated with tasks to complete, decisions to make, and course work to begin. Making decisions about financial aid, major, courses, housing, co-curricular involvement, and a myriad of other topics face them around every corner.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Don’t be afraid to ask questions of anyone, anytime. Learning how to navigate UMBC is not necessarily intuitive and it is completely normal to feel overwhelmed and not know what you are supposed to do in a variety of areas. So ask!


Tawny McManus
Interim Director, Student Disability Services, Student Support Services

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2014.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I am passionate about teaching undergraduate students and want to support freshman and transfer students going through a major life change when they begin coursework at a university, thus can benefit from any additional support we can provide them.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I am completing my PhD in Counseling Psychology and have been teaching at the undergraduate level since 2005.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Uncertainty of what lies ahead can be a huge challenge, as well as learning how to reach out to others when assistance is needed.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
The best advice I can give is to reach out to instructors when they have a question or need clarification. If they plan their time ahead and utilize instructor office hours when they need support, they will be so much more prepared and successful.


Katie Murray

Katie Murray
Associate Director, Admissions and Orientation

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2013.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
The IHU instructor position helps me bridge the gap between admissions and orientation to what the student experience is like when they arrive at UMBC.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I care about the success of incoming students and genuinely want to make the transition as smooth as possible.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
First-year students don’t always know the questions to ask or that they may need to even ask for help. The IHU/TRS course puts those resources in front of the student and forces them to ask good questions.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Challenge yourself- both academically and socially. Whether that is trying a new class or exploring a new club or organization, college is that chance to try new things and find out more about yourself.


Seth Messinger
Associate Professor
Sociology and Anthropology

Mr. Messinger will be teaching ANTH 211Y: Cultural Anthropology.


Jana Rehak
Visiting Lecturer
jrehak@umbc.edu

Ms. Rehak will be teaching ANTH 211Y: Cultural Anthropology.


Hannah Schmitz
Applied Learning Program Coordinator, Shriver Center

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2014.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
Most of my interactions with students occur during the summer and with students from all over Maryland. I am looking forward for the opportunity to connect with UMBC students and maintain a supportive role in their experience over the next four years.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I have the personality and capacity to engage with students and serve as a resource as they begin their UMBC experience.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
They can often be overwhelmed by the drastic change in autonomy and responsibility when they set foot on campus. It is important for them to connect with many people right away.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Get involved right away. Don’t put things off until you feel more settled or know more people. Finding your communities on campus is the best way to make UMBC feel like home for the next few years.


Dr. Elizabeth Tapscott
Instructor, History

In spring 2014, Dr. Tapscott is teaching HIST 111Y: Western Civilization 1700 to the Present.


Jing Yu
Doctoral Student, Psychology

How long have you been at UMBC?
Since 2010.

Why did you choose to have a Y section in addition to your regular role at UMBC?
I would like to earn experiences in independently teaching a course.

What else should students know about you as an instructor?
I have been a teaching assistant both undergraduate and graduate research method and statistics courses. I have also been working with dozens of undergraduate research assistants on a longitudinal research project focused on culture, parenting, and Chinese and Korean immigrant children’s social-emotional adjustment in the U.S.

What do you think are important challenges for First-Year Students at UMBC?
Adjusting to a new environment both physically and socially, learning to manage time and pressue and figuiring out their own interests and deciding a major later.

One tip for a new student at UMBC?
Learn more from peers.