Mandi Smith’s first step on the SCC campus was not when she was hired as the student activities specialist in 2008. Or when she was first hired at the Child Development Center (CDC) in 2006. The first time she was on campus was on her high school’s student council field trip.
“I thought it was really cool to be on a college campus,” she said.
As the student activities coordinator, Mandi is one of the most involved people at SCC, so it may be no surprise to learn she was just as involved in high school and in college. “In college, the more involved I got, the more I realized I loved working on a college campus,” Mandi said.
Mandi was the first one in her family to go to college; she attended Columbia College (Missouri) on scholarships. After two years of taking secondary education classes, Mandi decided against a career in teaching.
“I still loved working with kids, but after taking a few communication classes, I realized I was enjoying those classes a lot more,” she said. She made the switch to communications her junior year of college.
After graduation she looked for a position in student activities within higher education but with no luck. Instead, she took her first job as a paraprofessional for the Rockwood School District. And a year later, she began working at the CDC with her sister.
At the CDC, she met Kelley Pfeiffer, coordinating counselor for student activities, whose daughter was in Mandi’s class. At the time, Kelley was the only person responsible for student activities. “I told her I was looking for a student activities position,” Mandi said. “Because that’s where my heart is; that’s what I wanted to do.”
A couple years later, Kelley’s administrative assistant retired and the position was changed. Mandi didn’t hesitate to apply and in 2008 she was hired as the new student activities specialist.
Since then, Student Activities has tripled their programming. “It hasn’t always been easy,” Mandi said, “but we love providing these opportunities for students. Working with students is my favorite of the job.”
Mandi and Kelley have come a long way in the last four years, and they to continue to build a presence on campus and in the community. “We want students to get more involved and enjoy being here,” Mandi said. “We want them to have a connection to SCC in addition to academics, because I think having some fun in college is necessary.”