Mary Banks

Mary Banks

M.Ed., Higher Ed Administration, Columbia University

ABD, Teacher’s College, Columbia University

MS, Reading, Duquesne University

BA, English, University of Colorado Boulder

I have been an educator for my entire career, first in the classroom, and then, after returning to school myself, in the halls of higher education.  My educational mission is grounded in student service, acting as an advocate for students both as an academic advisor and as a mentor.  My higher education career has focused on student engagement.  When working in admissions, I have always pushed the envelope with the admissions committee, encouraging them to take a chance on the non-conforming applicant.  Often this allowed the admissions team to build a class with a variety of unique student attributes that occasionally trumped test scores as these “outliers” made extraordinary classmates and alumni!

Starting in higher education after a serious career in the classroom, prompted me to move quickly to gain professional experience in a variety of settings from admissions to financial aid to athletics and even unto work in career placement.  My experience at Columbia University in the City of New York was exceptional in that I was called on to move to very different functional areas when the need arose.  I look at this mobility as a direct response to my commitment to student services where I was an acknowledged leader.  I remain involved with my former students even after being gone from the City.  In fact these relationships have allowed me to find professional connections in many different locations, introducing my Columbia alumni network to my University of Colorado students for internship and job opportunities.  The focus of the higher education professional must be to build a continuum of connection from admissions to the alumni base.  I have built my career on this strategy and am happy to report that I am overwhelmed at the positive response I receive whenever I reach out to former students from all of my professional appointments.

I am happy to report great success among my graduates as they make their way in the world of work and am honored to be asked for letters of recommendation to some of the most prestigious universities in the country.  I am terribly excited to be a part of the InGenius Prep team and look forward to sharing my expertise with each of you.