Faces of GPS | Q&A with Erin Flood
As we prepare to kick off the fall 2016 term, we’re excited to introduce you to one of the newer faces of GPS. Erin Flood, a GPS student advisor, joined us in July, and we are thrilled to have someone so dedicated and passionate about her work on our team.
Graduate Professional Studies: Welcome, Erin! Let’s start with an easy question — where are you from?
Erin Flood: I grew up in a small town in rural upstate New York, about an hour north of Syracuse.
GPS: What drew you to higher education?
EF: I’m passionate about learning for learning’s sake, and I also view educational access and success as an important social justice issue. In college, I studied psychology and religion. I was interested in how people behave and make decisions. While I was an undergrad and even in high school, I had always worked in education-related fields. My first job out of college was advising and preparing high school students from Dorchester, Mass, for college. I really enjoyed working with my students and ended up staying in touch with a lot of them throughout their college experience. I was really disappointed to hear about the lack of support many of them faced once they got to college. They didn’t always have someone they could turn to, specifically in terms of academic and career advising, since they didn’t necessarily know how to navigate higher ed, or what they wanted to do after graduation. This cemented my interest in advising even more. Between college and grad school, I worked for a few different universities and education-related non-profits, and then I went to grad school for an Ed.M. in Human Development and Psychology. I like working directly with students, and being at GPS in this role has offered me that opportunity.
Erin with two of her proud Dorchester Academy graduates (Karlos and Iyana, Class of 2011)
GPS: Did you come straight out of your master’s program to Brandeis GPS?
EF: No, I worked at a community college in a rural area in Massachusetts immediately before joining GPS. Prior to that I was doing research, but I missed direct service and decided to go back to advising.
GPS: What are you most looking forward to here?
EF: Hands down getting to know my students. I can’t wait to learn more about what they’re excited about, what they’re learning at GPS, what their plans are. I’m looking forward to being useful to them. In advising, your students’ goals become your goals, so I’m excited to find out my students’ goals and, by extension, my own.
GPS: What is one thing you want your students to know about you?
EF: That I’m so excited to be here! That I genuinely care about my students and what they’re doing. I am open to helping them in any way I can. To my students: if you think of something that you want me to do, or if you have a question about something but you’re not really sure if that’s my job, reach out!
Faces of GPS is an occasional series that profiles Brandeis University Graduate Professional Studies students, faculty and staff. Find more Faces of GPS stories here.