Courtney A. Breslin of Chebeague Island, academic advisor in the University of Southern Maine’s Student Success Center in Gorham, was presented with the Emerging Professional Staff Award at the President’s Opening Breakfast recently.
Breslin has served USM in her current capacity since 2012, and prior to that was a graduate assistant in the Student Success Center and a Life Skills Tutor in the Office of Students with Disabilities at USM. She holds a master’s degree in adult and higher education from USM and a bachelor’s in psychology from the University of Vermont, Burlington.
The award is given annually and recognizes the recipient for excellence in their professional area, leadership and initiative in the fulfillment of USM’s mission, active contribution to the USM community and public service outside of USM.
Breslin’s colleagues, in nominating her for the award, recognized her development of a bridge between USM Athletics and Student Success as well as of an academic recovery program for students on probation. She is deemed Student Success’s “resident expert” on autism spectrum issues and strategies to employ with high-risk students. She is the primary advisor for USM’s College Transition High School Outreach program, for which she actively collaborates with local high schools.
Helen Gorgas Goulding, coordinator of Student Success in Gorham, described Breslin’s attitude as “infectious, upbeat and positive.” Beth Higgins, executive director for Student Success, added, “Students often refer their peers to her for assistance – a true professional compliment. Courtney is a rising star in the field of higher education.”
Breslin has been active in Relay for Life and runs various road races for community charities and causes. She is involved in helping children with Asperger Syndrome, both for work and on a volunteer basis. She also serves on the Chebeague Island Community Committee.