Misty Krell started her journey to New Century College (NCC) on a 2004 trip to volunteer with a women’s organization in India. There, she realized how impactful service learning can be. This meaningful adventure eventually led her to NCC where she found a position coordinating student volunteer experiences through what is now NCC’s Social Action and Integrative Learning (SAIL) program. From there, Krell’s skill with students motivated her to join NCC’s student services team, where she now serves as director.
Krell has worked on NCC’s student services team since 2009 and has developed her own advising style, working to help each student maximize their time at NCC. She said, “My approach is very individualized. I want to get to know the student and his or her passions and then try to make good recommendations based on the student’s interests. I want to help each student take control of his or her education and find something meaningful in it.”
Krell’s advising style perfectly suits the NCC academic model that encourages students to follow their interests, matching experiential learning opportunities to their career goals. Krell notes that this model necessitates more collaboration between advisors and students. She said, “NCC allows a very individualized approach to education, so we need to help the students along their paths. I try to encourage them to develop skills to be independent, to find their own voice and their own stance on things.”
In addition to advising, Krell teaches NCLC 391, Introduction to Integrative Studies, where she helps transfer students develop or refine the skills and competencies essential to NCC coursework, among them is critical thinking. Krell said, “Critical thinking is a higher level skill that students don’t just automatically have. They have to want to develop it. It is most rewarding for me when they have that light bulb go off and they see things from a deeper perspective.”
Krell believes that NCC students have a broad range of opportunities. She and the team of five other advisors work to help students create the education they need to reach their personal goals. Part of that includes trying the unexpected.
Krell said, “The NCC faculty and staff really care about students and want them to have amazing experiences. We help them make that happen. . . I encourage all my advisees to try an experiential learning opportunity that they wouldn’t necessarily choose on their own. These encounters can be life-changing.”
While Krell finds all aspects of her job rewarding, she notes that graduation is especially fulfilling. She said, “It’s a great moment. I’ve known many of these students for all four years and I’ve been able to see them develop and grow. It’s great to see them go on to that next step.”