SAU Buzz

Beeswax: Kiley Schmidt

by Kasey Zielinski
Posted on Feb 02, 2018

Can you tell me a little about yourself?

I grew up in northwestern Iowa. I’m a first generation college student. I went to the University of Northern Iowa for my undergraduate career in social studies education. I have spent the last decade in the Cedar Valley area. I graduated in 2012, then I became a teacher for a year and a half, and then I decided to go back to school to get my master’s at UNI in post secondary education and student affairs. That’s where I have been working for the last year and a half in Residence Life.


What is your role as the Student Employment Coordinator?

I help students who qualify for work study find on campus positions. I also work with students who have an on-campus position and are technically working temporary employment. So they’re still working on campus, or they’re working in the area within campus so the Children’s Campus, Genesis, or Project Renewal, and I just get them set up and get the paperwork filled out. I essentially supervise everyone. If a student has a problem with their supervisor, their work environment, they need an extra job or it’s just not a good fit for them, they talk to me and I let them know about some alternative positions on campus.  


How has your adjustment to SAU gone?

It’s been really smooth. I really enjoy it. Before this position, I was working in housing and I was working 50-60 hours a week and living in. So, it’s been kind of nice to have that 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. work schedule. So it has been an adjustment, but it’s been really good.


Following in Mary Ohland's footsteps, how are you you feeling you're adjusting to the switch?

Those are definitely big shoes to fill. I had the opportunity to work with Mary that last couple of weeks she was here, so she was able to train me. She’s just this vibrant personality and she brings a lot energy and she was really good at her job. I feel like there’s a lot of pressure to be awesome and fill those shoes, but I think that that’s definitely a goal to work towards: being like Mary.


Have you felt some of the nerves and stresses of students coming in with questions about internships/jobs?

I think the majority of students are coming in to get their cover letter looked at and their resume critiqued and so I don’t usually see that when they come into the office. I see students that are looking for a position and they did not have one last semester. There is a little bit of stress because there aren’t a lot of positions open right now for student employees. I think that’s the big thing, there’s a lack of opportunity. For the most part though, majority of my students were able to find positions this semester. They don’t seem to be nervous or anything about it. They’re just excited to have a job.


What made you decide to come interview for a position here at SAU?

My fiance lives here in Davenport, so I  just wanted to move into the area to be closer to her. I was location bound and so I began applying for jobs in the Quad Cities and I really like Ambrose because of it’s small community feel. I also like a lot of things that we stand for as a University. A big part of who I am and a passion of mine is social justice.  I know that this institution is very social justice focused and that’s something I was interested in when I was looking for a job. I’ve never worked at a private institution where being able to openly share my faith is welcomed as well and it is incorporated into the holistic well-being of the student.


What's your favorite part of SAU so far?

The office that I work in has been so warm and welcoming. It’s just a really healthy work environment, so that’s a really nice change of pace. Just being in the presence of a lot of people that care and who are down to Earth. It’s not only something that I see in this office, but it’s something that I’ve seen in the student affairs division, it has been really great. Everyone has welcomed me with open arms and I really appreciate that.