Post

HDFS welcomes Cindy Stewart, Educational Program Administrator

Cindy StewartCindy Stewart grew up in South Windsor, Connecticut, but she ventured up to University of Maine for her bachelors and master’s degrees. She earned a B.A. in Zoology while enjoying a variety of extracurricular activities such as flamenco dancing and axe throwing. In her last semester, she conducted marine biology research on an NSF grant. Somewhere in an obscure journal issue from long ago is an article about Batesian mimicry in nudibranchs on which she was probably the seventh author. She learned a great deal about sea slugs and also that she didn’t want to do marine biology research as a career.

 

After a year working at Eastern Mountain Sports and getting great deals on camping and hiking gear, Cindy returned to the University of Maine to earn her Master of Education in college student development. She funded this endeavor by graduate assistant positions as a residence hall director and community organizer. Thus began her career in student affairs and several more positions in residence life at SUNY Cortland and UMaine plus serving as director of new student programs and orientation. In her time in student affairs work she experienced a major fire on the top floor of her residence hall, an epic oatmeal fight in the basement, and all kinds of antics in between.

 

A move to the Boston area resulted in finding a job that straddled student and academic affairs, working as assistant director at the Experimental College at Tufts University. There Cindy recruited professionals from the greater Boston area to teach courses in their realm of expertise for Tufts undergraduate students. She did everything from print and digital marketing to office management to instructor orientation, plus taught a film studies course for a group of junior and senior undergraduates who in turn taught courses on film-related topics for first-year student advising groups. One of her proudest achievements was a multi-year series of monthly events for faculty to share their current research with a lay audience of students, staff, and faculty from across the university as well as members of the local community.

 

Another move, this time back to Connecticut, brought Cindy to UConn in 2013. A UConn women’s basketball fan since her teens, she was excited to be a part of Husky Nation as a program assistant and then program coordinator in the Department of Communication. She is very excited to be joining HDFS as program administrator and looks forward to meeting everyone!

Carla Gomez retires after more than 20 years with UConn HDFS

CONGRATULATIONS to CARLA GOMEZ who retired in December 2021, after more than 20 years at UConn HDFS!

Carla joined the School of Family Studies in 2000 for a 10 day temporary position that turned into more than two decades of work. Carla earned her bachelors degree in Physical Education from Central Connecticut State University. Prior to working at UConn, she held positions at Coventry High School as a physical education teacher, Charter Hospital of Tampa Bay in Florida as the Director of Activity Therapy, and worked in the Willington Public Schools.

In the School of Family Studies, which subsequently became the Department of Human Development and Family Studies, and later, the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, Carla held a range of different positions. Most recently, she served as the HDFS Educational Program Administrator for a number of years. Carla served as the face of the department, often the first person that future faculty and students met when visiting the department. In this role, she supported students, staff, faculty, and alumni in every imaginable task. Her responsibilities were wide ranging, including budgets, staffing, HR and payroll, hiring, merit and PTR, building and space management, departmental lectures and events, and countless other things (including loaning out staplers, directing lost students in hallways, and helping faculty from other departments set up equipment in classrooms down the hall). To quote Professor Emeritus Steve Wisensale, Carla is “the best of the best.”

Carla’s plans for retirement include traveling – including a long awaited trip to Vancouver to see her son – as well as volunteering, biking in the summer and snowshoeing in the winter! She will be greatly missed within the HDFS department, but the HDFS students, staff, and faculty know how much she has earned this next stage, and wishes for her an empty inbox and no more frazzled last minute requests from colleagues.