Meet the Center for Leadership & Community Engagement staff.
Meredith Hein serves as the Director for the Center of Leadership and Community Engagement at Rollins College. She completed her master's degree in education leadership: student personnel administration at the University of Central Florida in May of 2007. Meredith feels that working in higher education allows her to continually learn from those around her, as well as to teach. Meredith loves to learn and laugh, and as a member of the Rollins community, she gets the opportunity to do that on a daily basis.
Motivating, teaching, and giving back to others is what inspires Meredith to be only a small part of such an amazingly engaged community. Within the Center at Rollins College, her work has focused in the areas of integrated teaching, campus-wide involvement initiatives, student-led programming, community engagement partnerships, educational leadership, service-learning, and social justice work. Her philosophy is centered on student learning through engagement opportunities linking their curricular and co-curricular experiences. Her personal mission is to foster learning grounded in authenticity and integrity while also inspiring change and empowering our campus community in creative and diverse ways.
Additionally, in her free time, Meredith loves spending time with friends and family. She also really enjoys being a foodie, watching movies and TV, playing with puppies, rooting on the Yankees and catching up on sleep!
Originally from Rhode Island, Marissa received her BA in English from Bates College and her MA in Educational Leadership – Higher Ed. from the University of Central Florida. Prior to coming to Rollins, she spent over five years working with local universities here in Central Florida. Extremely excited about joining the Community Engagement team, Marissa can’t wait to put her passions into action.
A strong believer in the power of education, Marissa loves working with students and helping them connect their interests with the needs of the community. Marissa oversees the Bonner Leaders Program and coordinates assessment. She also works with faculty to develop service-learning opportunities and with community partners to create meaningful and sustainable partnerships.
In her free time, Marissa loves spending quality time with her family and friends. She enjoys serving her community, learning from those around her, reading, spending time at the beach, and traveling. Please don’t hesitate to stop by her office and say hello!
Courtney grew up in the Midwest, calling the Kansas City, MO area home for eighteen years before attending Drake University in Des Moines, IA to receive her bachelor’s degree in politics and sociology. Upon graduation, she served for a year as an AmeriCorps*VISTA. During her time earning a Masters of Education at Marquette University, Courtney coordinated various community engagement initiatives in addition to interning at a local non-profit where she mentored teen girls in urban Milwaukee.
Courtney advises the Immersion Planning Team, facilitates personality inventory workshops, and supports community initiatives. She strongly believes in the importance of connecting academic material to the social issues that impact our communities. Courtney is ecstatic about joining the CLCE team at Rollins and continuing to empower Rollins students, staff, and faculty to create change in their communities.
Off the clock, Courtney can be found enjoying the great outdoors, preferably in the water! When not plunging through the waves, she is likely at the local library checking out the latest YA novel or planning her next big travel adventure. Courtney is also passionate about many social issues, including children’s literacy and sustainability.
Sofia obtained her B.A. in International Relations and Elementary Education from Rollins College in 2014. She previously worked as a Work Study in the Center for Leadership & Community Engagement, and served as a Student Coordinator for JUMP, Pathways to College, and Rollins Relief.
Sofia is a great first point of contact for the department and is always willing to help find an answer or track down another team member. Contact Sofia regarding the JUMP buses, reimbursements, community partner meetings, and general questions about the Center for Leadership & Community Engagement at Rollins.
Sharifa Ford serves as the 2016/2017 AmeriCorps Public Ally and Bonner Leaders Coordinator at Rollins College. She completed her Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies and Public Relations at Rollins College. The opportunity to serve in her current position has allowed her to engage in the critical thinking process through an educational, non-profit, social justice and leadership lens. As an active learner, she is passionate about continuous learning opportunities while creating positive change within communities.
Her combined experience is focused in the areas of mentorship, leadership, communications, educational program initiatives, and capacity building through community engagement. In her spare time, she enjoys writing thought-provoking poetry. Quote: Give someone an opportunity because you never know when you may need one at your lowest point - Sharifa
For more information on the Bonner Leaders Program and community partnership, please contact Sharifa.
Born in Caracas, Venezuela and raised in Cape Coral, Florida, Stephanie received her AA from Valencia College and her BA from Rollins College. She is currently attending Rollins College, pursing her Master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Elated to be part of this team Stephanie looks forward to helping students find their power, voice, and passions through community engagement and following their growth into socially conscious leaders. Stephanie serves as advisor to The Democracy Project and Rollins Relief. She also moderates social media and provides support to yearly programming.
In her free time, she enjoys the beach, live music, and reading. Though she spends most of it chasing after her animals. Stop by her shared office space for a pep talk, the door is always open!
Megan is a New Jersey native and UCF Knight excited to start a new journey as a Tar. Graduating from UCF with a degree in Journalism in May 2016, Megan is now starting her first year in the Higher Education and Policy Master's program at UCF. She will be working closely with the Emerging Leadership Institute, the Leadership Ally Program, the Summer Leadership Conferences, the Rita Bornstein Student Leadership Forum, and providing support to the Immersion program.
Megan joined the Rollins Community seeking a close-knit atmosphere of a 3,000 student college after spending four years at a 63,000 student university. She is passionate about diversity, hearing peoples' stories and helping individuals discover what they want to do with their lives, leading her to the Center for Leadership & Community Engagement.
She was involved in many different organizations and offices at UCF, including Admissions, Student Involvement, Housing and Residence Life, and Undergraduate Research and seeks to continue working and learning in Student Affairs throughout her life. Megan spends her free time reading, crafting, running around Disney and exploring as much of nature as she can.