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Camille Hollins- Informational Interview

2017 April 21
by Camille

In my recent interview, I happened to meet a UM alumni, Dr. Harold Waters. Dr. Waters is the director of the Comprehensive Studies Program at U of M. He provides connections for students through various programs and studies that CSP offers. He contributes to student success through the Comprehensive Studies Program, giving students access to tutoring, smaller class lectures, and providing closer relationships among the students and professors. I was interested in interviewing Dr. Waters because I was interested in the process of obtaining roles such as that of Director of the Comprehensive Studies Program.

The daily work as a director in such fields as the CSP program here at the University of Michigan requires face-to-face connections with many students. Dr. Waters, graduating from the university with a degree in Psychology and English and previous experience in teaching, is glad to be in a career where he can share connections and experiences with students here at the university. He not only makes programs for students to feel more connected to the university, some like poetry nights, career information sessions, major information sessions, and group/personal tutoring, but he also helps students connect to the world outside of the university. He connects students with previous alumni, study abroad programs, mentors, and advisors to guide students along their college careers. Most of the skills required for this career is communication, constant interactions with people, and knowledge of resources provided by the university.

Asking Dr. Waters of the things that needed improvement in the Comprehensive Studies Program and the university, he replied that there needs to be more diversity and more representation on campus. The biggest and most important part of Dr. Waters’ job is to provide students with motivation and connect with them to help them in their studies. The lack of diversity and representation on campus interferes with some students because they may lack the resources and motivation that accompanies representation and diversity on campus. Dr. Waters is in the process of creating a larger network of alumni and mentors to connect with the underrepresented students on campus and in the CSP program. He also wants to expand the scope of the CSP program to provide resources and a larger number of smaller classes to upperclassmen. He wants to offer test prep courses for the CSP students and work with students all the way to their graduation. Dr. Waters’ goals for later in his career is to become Dean of the university to be at a higher level of decision making. He would like to be able to teach more and have more opportunities to share knowledge with others. His end goal is to improve the CSP program to suit the needs of all their students.

The advice from Dr. Waters inspired me deeply to connect more with my community and contribute back to my community whenever I can. Dr. Waters’ advice was to always aspire for bigger dreams, he said to aim high and always take advantage of the resources and services provided to help me to achieve my goals. He advised me to set examples for those who may see me as a role model. I saw this as an opportunity to develop goals for my future that would prove my success and happiness. I would use this to motivate others who see me as a role model and I will be able to use my time to connect with my previous communities to donate my time to help prospective students throughout their university career. I may not get into a career on the level of university staff, but I will use the resources and advice to prepare for my life after college.

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