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First Year Experience

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photo of Jamie Gutierrez

Jamie Gutierrez

Assistant Director, Residence Life and First Year Experience
Davis Community Center
I was born and raised in Lomita, CA. I began my undergraduate studies at Chapman in the fall of 2008. As a first-generation college student, my transition to Chapman was not easy. I think back on my experience and I credit the work done by Student Affairs professionals that allowed me to develop holistically. I was fortunate as an undergraduate to serve as an Orientation Leader and Orientation Coordinator. I graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Arts in Integrated Educational Studies and in 2015 with a Master of Arts in Leadership Development. Prior to serving as the Assistant Director of Residence Life and First Year Experience, I supported the Office of Orientation and First Year Programs as the Graduate Assistant and Program Coordinator. I love Chapman University and I can't wait to share that with incoming students!
photo of Jordan Vaughn

Jordan Vaughn

Program Coordinator, Residence Life and First Year Experience
Davis Community Center
I recently relocated to Orange County to pursue a Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy here at Chapman University. I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of San Diego in May of 2016, and officially decided that I did not want to leave Southern California any time soon! I have always loved how special and unique a college community feels. This has fueled my passion for leadership and creating campus connections. I hope to assist the department in creating a welcoming and open environment for every incoming and current student here at Chapman University!
photo of David Brown

David Brown

Graduate Assistant, Orientation and First Year Programs
Davis Community Center
I am currently in the Marriage and Family Therapy program here at Chapman. I obtained my bachelor’s degree at California State University Long Beach where I studied Psychology and Child Development and Family Studies. Throughout my education I have always appreciated the support that has been provided by professors and educational counselors. Their support allowed me to make a smoother transition into college life and allowed me to thrive. For the past two years, I have been working with youth in crisis, where I was the one to support them in their time of need; I have found this work extremely rewarding. Now that I am transitioning to the First Year Experience team, I am excited to continue providing support as I work with first year students. My hope is to help them make Chapman a home.
photo of Nicole Howard

Nicole Howard

Operations and Logistics Orientation Coordinator
Glass Hall
Upon arrival at Chapman, I knew that I found a place that would allow me to flourish as a person. I was not nervous at all but excited to get out of the small town I grew up in. Throughout my first year, I met countless warm and welcoming people, had beach bonfires, went on day trips to San Diego and L.A., but I still felt like I did not have a meaningful connection to Chapman. Between my first and second year, I thought about transferring, but luckily gave Chapman another chance. My second year I got involved by being an orientation leader, joining Kappa Delta Pi and Gamma Beta Phi (honor societies on campus), working for residence life and first year experience as an office assistant, attending many Chapman sports games, volunteering in the community, among other things. This is when I finally realized that for me to feel at home somewhere, I must be involved and give back to the community. I could finally say, without a doubt, Chapman is my home. I am now going into my third year and could not be happier. Of course, I have had ups and downs with friends, stressful weeks with school and work, and days where I question myself, but on those rough days, I always have people to build me up and help me out. The community, the resources, the support I have from peers and faculty at Chapman is something I did not expect to get during my college experience but is a huge reason I am grateful to be a panther. All my experiences, good and bad, are the reason I am an Orientation Coordinator today. I want to share and use my experiences to make events and programs to welcome and support incoming students and families. Every person coming to Chapman is going to have their own journey and I can't wait to see the start of your college journey at orientation. Welcome to the Chapman family!
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