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Higher Education Administration

Meet Our Students

Kirsten Brown

kirsten brown
Bachelor of Science in Wildlife and Fisheries Resources, West Virginia University
Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration

Kirsten is a second year student in the M.A. program pursuing her degree full-time. After graduating from WVU with her undergraduate degree, Kirsten worked at Alderson Broaddus University in the Athletic Department as a Head Coach and Recruiter. This past summer, Kirsten held a full-time interim position with the Mountaineer Athletic Club (MAC) as an Assistant Director of Donor Relations/Special Events. While enrolled in her final year of her degree, she holds the position of a Graduate Assistant for the MAC. Kirsten is also involved with the “Pride of WV Marching Band” as a Twirling Instructor.  In the future, she plans to continue a career in university fundraising. She hopes to further her education and have the opportunity to teach and research in this field.

“WVU has many graduate assistantship opportunities for those students looking for extra help with the cost of tuition but also wanting career experience. The online courses are great for students who have busy schedules, families or work full-time.”   


Rachel Nieman

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Undergraduate Recruitment Specialist, WVU College of Business and Economics

Rachel Nieman, a Morgantown native, is a student in the Ed.D. program. She works at the WVU College of Business and Economics as their Undergraduate Recruitment Specialist, where she provides consultation to incoming and prospective business students, travels throughout the state and region to represent WVU B&E to high schools and communities, creates and executes the College's prospective student communication plan, and oversees the College's Student Ambassador Program. Her interests lie in access to higher education among underrepresented populations, undergraduate retention initiatives for at-risk populations, and internal and external communication within higher education institutions. Rachel is also a member of the WVU Council for Women's Concerns, an organization that promotes equality and empowers women in all areas of the University community. In this role she has led initiatives related to sexual assault awareness and prevention, and celebrating and honoring women of color. She has played support roles in initiatives related to pay equity, support for expectant mothers, and the development of a Women's Center at WVU. She also serves as the adviser for the WVU chapter of Phi Beta Lambda, and is a freelance writer for Fairmont-based Corridor Magazine. Rachel aspires to an executive role related to undergraduate student support services.


Katlin Swisher

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B.S.J. Journalism (2012)
M.A., Higher Education Administration (2014)

Katlin is a student in the Ed.D. program from Hurricane, WV. In addition to being a full-time student, she is the communications specialist for WVU’s Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. She previously served WVU as an admissions counselor, program coordinator for admissions communications, and program coordinator for orientation. Katlin is also a freelance writer for West Virginia Executive , the state’s leading business publication. Katlin’s research interests include college access in Appalachia, land-grant universities and their changing engagement strategies, and higher education policy. 

In her spare time, she enjoys reading, running, biking, following college sports, and volunteering at her church. 

“My initial experiences with New Student Orientation and then-Office of Undergraduate Student Recruitment inspired my passion for interacting with prospective students and helping them realize their own opportunities at West Virginia University… The most desirable aspect of the Higher Education Administration program is how the content of the program relates directly to my career, informs practical applications, and inspires ideas. Relevance is key.”


Corey Talley

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Graduate Assistant for Student-Athlete Development, WVU Football

Corey Talley is a full-time student in the M.A program from Williamsburg, VA. He currently works as a graduate assistant for Student-Athlete Development for West Virginia University’s Football Program. This has been a great opportunity because it allows him to get hands on experience working with student athletes and learning the ins and outs of advising. He received his undergraduate degree in Sport Management here at West Virginia in 2015 and has a strong passion for working in athletics. In addition to his job with Student Athlete Development, Corey he served as a graduate assistant in the Title IX Compliance office here on campus. He was heavily involved with the It’s On Us campaign on WVU’s campus, planning events on campus to inform students on how to prevent sexual assault on college campuses and what resources are available to those who are affected by sexual assault. He had the opportunity to represent WVU at the Champions of Change Event at the White House, an event that featured a speech and recognition from Vice President Biden. After graduation, Corey hopes to pursue a position as an academic advisor for an athletic program. Long term, Corey would love to become an athletic director for a higher education institution someday.

“Being a part of this Higher Education program has truly been a blessing for me. I am thankful for having professors that genuinely care about my well-being and development. It has been a joy taking courses with my classmates because we all come from different backgrounds and bring different perspectives to the table. The relationships that I have formed during my time in the program have been great and I am thankful for them.”