About Us

Professional Staff

OUR PROFESSIONAL STAFF MEMBERS ARE A GROUP OF DEDICATED INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE COMMITTED TO STUDENT SUCCESS


CAROLINA NUTT
Director

Responsibilities: In my role I provide guidance for the day-to-day operations of the department including: the planning and assessment of programs, analysis and assessment of data related to new student success, oversight of the budget, and evaluation of new student needs in order to develop programs and resources to align with those needs. Additionally, I oversee the collaborative campus-wide initiatives of the undergraduate student experience program which includes first- and second-year experiences and transfer student success.

Education:
M.Ed., University of South Carolina, Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration

B.A., Florida State University, Political Science and Sociology

Hometown: Orlando, Florida / Bogota, Colombia

Fun Fact: I enjoy cooking and baking, as well as exploring new cities.

Favorite Part of USF St. Petersburg: Being able to work with all the first-year students who are so eager to get involved on campus and make an impact in the community.

BRANDI ARNOLD
Assistant Director

Responsibilities: As Assistant Director, I oversee the first, second, and transfer experience. I provide insight and direction on the peer coaching program and events for each experience. Additionally, I provide support for student experience services and initiatives at the institution.

Education:
M.Ed., University of Florida, Student Personnel in Higher Education
B.A., University of South Florida, Communication Studies – Relational

Hometown: Mount Dora, Florida

Fun Fact: I love to read and try new food!

Favorite Part of USF St. Petersburg: Working with amazing students who want to better and further the mission of the university!


MEREDITH MECHANIK
Program Coordinator – First and Second Year

Responsibilities:  I oversee the first- and second-year programs, supervising peer coaches and coordinating events for freshmen and sophomores. Some of my favorite programs include First-Year Convocation, Peer Coach Reveal, and #usfspMORE Week. I also support our peer coaches as they lead the Network, a program that helps students connect to others who share an interest or hobby. 

Education:
M.Ed., The University of Texas at Austin, Higher Education Leadership and Policy

B.A., Duke University, Psychology and Theater Studies

Hometown: Tampa, FL

Fun Fact: Memoirs are my favorite – I’ve read over 125 since graduating college!

Favorite Part of USF St. Petersburg: Being part of a close-knit, collaborative community where I have the opportunity to build relationships with so many incredible students.

MICHELE HOLTON
Administrative Specialist

Responsibilities: As an Administrative Specialist, I perform higher-level office duties and responsibilities include providing administrative support to ensure efficient operation of the office. Supports purchasing for the department, maintain p-cards, payroll, and human resources processes. Perform other administrative duties that provide specialized program support.

Education:
Associate Degree, Lamar University

Hometown: Middletown, PA

Fun Fact: I love foreign films and history

Favorite Part of USF St. Petersburg: I feel like I am part of the best-extended family in the world. Whether I am walking around or in the Reef, I always see someone that will smile and say hi. I love having a college staff/student relationship which would not happen if I was on a bigger campus.

 


 

BRENNA WHITTON
Transfer Programs Coordinator 

Responsibilities: As the Transfer Programs Coordinator, I manage & supervise the COMPASS Transfer Program and Peer Coaches. I also assist in planning Week of Welcome, Signature Transfer Programs and National Transfer Week. I seek to create a supportive, welcoming, and inclusive environment for our transfer students while being an ally throughout their transition to USFSP.  

Education: 
M.S., Mississippi State University, Educational Leadership – Student Affairs & Higher Education 
B.A., University of Connecticut, Psychology, Human Development & Family Studies 

Hometown: Newtown, CT 

Fun Fact: I love finding new music & traveling (and especially love finding new music from traveling!).  

Favorite Part of USFSP: Although I am new to USF St. Petersburg, I have already experienced a great deal of support from the friendly & caring staff. I am SO excited to meet students, build relationships, and contribute to the welcoming culture of USFSP.

STUDENT SUCCESS ADVOCATE

ANTONIA J. ROBINSON
3rd & 4th Year Student Success Advocate

Responsibilities: My responsibilities are to assist with the holistic needs (academic, career, personal) of third and fourth-year students through mentoring/coaching, providing support, connecting them to resources, and much, much more.

Education:
M.Ed., University of North Florida, Educational Leadership: Higher Education Administration
B.S., University of Florida, Journalism

Hometown: Jacksonville, Florida

Fun Fact: I have a tortoiseshell, polydactyl (aka Hemmingway) cat. Her name is Wicket because she looks like the Ewok from Star Wars.

Favorite Part of USF St. Petersburg: The opportunity to make a difference in the lives of amazing students who are so close to graduation through collaboration with so many wonderful people on campus.