Hi! My name is Maria Garcia and I am fifth year student here at Oregon State University.  I am from Hermiston, a small town in Eastern Oregon.  I am very excited to be interning at the Office of the Dean of Student Life this term and even more excited to be receiving my bachelors in June!  It has been a long journey but definitely worth the struggle because of the opportunities I have received.

Walking to work

Because of the very busy term, I like to take some time to relax in the Memorial Union and enjoy my surroundings.  Besides interning in the office, I am also taking a few classes, including a cardio kickboxing class to ease away the stress!  One of my biggest goals is to go to graduate school to obtain my masters and I would love it if it were in the College Student Services Administration (CSSA) here at Oregon State.  Meanwhile, the drafts after drafts of resumes and personal essay questions will continue.

Peace and diversity in the Memorial Union

Working in the office has been quite enjoyable (as I have wonderful colleagues and supervisors)!  I am currently working on a few projects, the first one being researching and compiling data on other dean of student life/student affairs websites and comparing it to our university and other peer institutions.  This has proven to be quite a challenge when I dislike their website and can find nothing positive to say and bring back as an improvement to our own site.  Nevertheless, the final product of this research will definitely contain a lot of information to consider when making improvements to our website and office.

Furthermore, what began as a summer internship with a couple of students creating videos to establish a more inclusive environment for students and easy access to a visual tool, has now expanded into this term as well.  I am co-creating captioned videos with other interns in the office to offer students the opportunity to learn a little more about services identified as imperative on campus.  Through this project, we hope students and families will be able to easily navigate our website and find the information they need.  Our intention is to ensure that students are aware of everything our Office of the Dean of Student Life offers and create an enjoyable college experience.

Finally, I am also working with my internship supervisor, Kim McAloney, to try to establish a few Students of Color meetings where students interest’s can be met.  Because my personal interests lie in student affairs and because I am in the NASPA Undergraduate Fellow’s  Program (NUFP), I have targeted my meetings to students with these same interests.  Currently, this is still a two-times-a-term project, but hopefully next term it will grow.

With all these projects, and the other projects currently underway in the office, it has been quite busy around here!  I enjoy listening to the updates other interns have in our weekly meeting and establishing a cohort between our DOSL team as we engage in icebreakers.

I can’t wait to see the advances we make this term!  Fall is here and besides the rain, it is time to appreciate the hot chocolates, yummy pastries and the changing color of leaves.

-Maria Garcia

Edge of Oregon State University campus


Hello!  My name is Hannah Pynn, I’m the Graduate Assistant for the Dean of Student Life (DOSL) at Oregon State University.

Now that the rain is here, it finally feels like fall in Oregon.  Since this is my first term as a grad student, the rain gives me a good excuse to settle in every evening with a cup of tea and a stack of books to study for my College Student Services Administration (CSSA) masters program.  The CSSA program is a masters program that studies student affairs and higher education, which means that maybe some day I’ll be a Dean of Student Life myself!  For now, I’m focusing on writing lots of papers and absorbing lots of information about how to serve college students.

As the Graduate Assistant in the office, I am working on several campus-wide initiatives that focus on the community and holistic development of every student on our beautiful campus.

Everyone Matters @ OSU is a global social media campaign that promotes inclusivity and non-judgement.  Check out how you can voice your thoughts on why YOU think Everyone Matters @ OSU.


I am also a coordinator for the Interfaith Community Service Initiative which is a campaign that aspires to initiate meaningful dialogue between religious and nonreligious individuals, bringing together students from all walks of life under the common umbrella of community service.

When I go home, I go home to a mansion that is the home of about 130 women.  My husband and I are the House Directors at Kappa Delta Sorority and this is our fifth year living in the residence.  We love our KD ladies.  This is us at Mock Rock last year, the huge KD philanthropy event that raised over $35,000 for child abuse prevention locally and nationally.

I’m looking forward to continuing my work in DOSL for the next two years.  I love when people visit me at work, so feel free to stop by to chat in Kerr A200.