Name: Camila Mariel
Major: Political science
Minors: Educational studies and Portuguese
Her Campus: How did you first hear about Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution?
Camila Mariel: “I have been working with the Dean of Students Office since my freshman year, and I worked at the Disability Resource Center for almost three years as a testing coordinator. Since I was a member of the staff, I would get emails with updates, and I got an email about the Student Conduct Committee so I decided to apply for it.”
HC: How competitive is the application process for the Student Conduct Committee?
CM: “It is definitely extensive. You have to get reference letters, write a lot of short answers and go through an intense interview process, including a group interview and an individual interview. It’s competitive, I would say. You have to meet the high GPA requirements, but it is doable.”
HC: What are your obligations as the case coordinator?
CM: “I do all the ‘behind the scenes’ work for case hearings. I prep the evidence, I contact the witnesses, talk to them and I schedule all the hearings for the office.”
HC: How did your expectations differ from your experiences?
CM: “I did not realize how much work I would be doing because as a member of the Student Conduct Committee and as case coordinator, my roles have been different. I served on the committee for a year, and it was a huge time commitment because I had to set aside a lot of time in my schedule to be able to serve on hearings. It was a challenge that I really never expected. Since I was promoted to the position of case coordinator, I do not serve on the hearings anymore because I am too invested in the cases, so I already know too much information.”
HC: In what ways did serving on the committee prepare you for Teach for America?
CM: “I am definitely exposed to diverse students and situations, and I have to be professional in every sense of the word when it comes to serving on hearings and working with students who have been through a rough time. Odds are that if they are going through the conduct process, they are in a high-stress situation or at least have been in the past because that’s how they got there in the first place. It’s a matter of being patient and understanding. Instead of judging people based on what they have done, I try to understand their background and what brought them to this point.”
HC: Do you intend to pursue a career in education or in the legal field?
CM: “My passion is education policy, but I have always wanted to go to law school. I’m just not sure how to put the two together right now. Teach for America is my way of being in the classroom as a teacher and understanding how these policies directly influence education. After my two-year commitment with Teach for America, I want to apply to law school and specialize somehow in education policy.”
Photo Courtesy of Camila Mariel