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Staff Spotlight: Mia Harvey and Missy MacPherson

October 19, 2022
Left is Missy MacPherson and right is Mia Harvey posing in the Campus Center
Pictured left to right: Missy Macpherson, Mia Harvey

Over the summer, the Student Engagement and New Student Programs Office at Bryn Mawr expanded with two new staff members. We sat down with Student Engagement Coordinator Mia Harvey and New Student Programs Coordinator Miss MacPherson to learn more about their roles and their experiences working with Bryn Mawr students.

Can you explain what your job roles entail?

Mia: “My role is to plan a lot of the activities on campus. I’m the advisor for all clubs, so I’m their go-to person if they need any resources. I’m part of the planning process for a lot of the trips that the College puts together for students. I also work with the Self-Government Association and Traditions.”

Missy: “I work with our first-year students to welcome them to campus. Over the summer I sent out the Tuesday newsletters and all other communications to prepare our first-year students to come to campus. I also oversee all of the customs people with the help of our graduate assistant Molly Davis. 

I’ve also had a hand in Thrive which is our first-year experience course which Mia and I are facilitators for.

We don’t want our first-year students to feel like the support ends after the fall semester, so we are also working on programming for the spring. So, when they come back from that really long winter break they can feel that they still have that support. This is the first time we are doing organized programming for first-year students in the second semester so we hope students are looking forward to what's to come in the spring.” 

Mia: "Missy and I are also on call, meaning we are part of a team of four people who are contacted in the case of student emergencies. Our role is to respond to situations after the traditional 9-5 working hours and to provide support and guidance to our students. We are really happy to provide this type of support for our students and to be there for them during the intense situations that can happen throughout their time in college." 

What led both of you to this career area?

Mia: I went to Edinboro University of Pennsylvania where I got my undergraduate degree in music and communications studies with a leadership focus. Then, I got my masters during the pandemic in communication studies with an organizational structure emphasis. I knew I really wanted to be a part of a student-led organization with community building and leadership development, and I wanted to work with student leaders and develop those foundations that are going to go with them for the rest of their lives. 

Missy: “I graduated from St. Joseph’s University in 2020 and then I graduated this past May with a masters in higher education policy and student affairs from West Chester University. I was really impacted by the student affairs and higher ed professionals at St. Joes. I would not be who I am now without these people, and I wanted to become a person to help, support, and mold college students just like I had been, which is what led me to getting my degree in higher ed. 

What really stood out to me about Bryn Mawr was how small it was. I thought that it would provide a really unique opportunity to work closely with students, faculty and staff. To be really intimate in the work that I’m doing, and to meet the first-years where they are has been really phenomenal. Working in the Thrive program and getting that classroom experience has also been really special.” 

What are some of the activities your office has planned?

Mia: “We’ve done Friday Night Lights, owl paintings, succulent planting, sand art during Fall Frolic, grocery bingo, and open mic nights. 

Every single week we come into this office, there’s always something new we’re dealing with, or a new challenge, or a new exciting activity we’re planning, but we have a lot of great support behind us, a lot of good friends, and great student workers too. It’s been really exhilarating.” 

How can the Bryn Mawr community stay up to date with the programming from Student Engagement and New Student Programs?

Mia: “There's always something new going on so students should check the Daily Digest and keep an eye on our social media. It is such a buzzing campus, and because this is our first year really coming back after the pandemic, all the clubs are open again with events and everyone's ready to go.”

Are there any resources from your office that students may not know about?

Mia: “Our website has a lot of great resources, all of our forms, and information about party and club policies. It also has the contact information for me and Missy.” 

Missy: “I said this to all the first-years during the craziness of customs week, but if they ever want to schedule a meeting with me just to talk about the first-year experience, or to talk about how they're doing, I would love that. I’m open to be here either to help them find resources, or to support them in pointing them in the right direction and be that touchpoint for them. I am always open to talk about how they’re doing, whether that's celebrating joys, or talking about hardships. The first-years have their CPs, AOAs, and HAs who all do fantastic work, but having another staff member who really knows about first year experience is also important. 

Bryn Mawr is such a wonderful, magical place with such rich history and tradition and we’re excited to be part of those rich traditions and history, but also excited to bring some newness where it's needed to help enhance the overall student experience.” 

Student Engagement and New Student Programs

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