Shelly McMahon is halfway through her first semester as registrar at Meredith College, but she already feels a strong connection to the College.
McMahon, who began as registrar in July, was impressed by Meredith’s Going Strong brand during the application process.
“I remember looking at Meredith’s website and being thoroughly impressed with the Going Strong campaign,” McMahon said. “I identified with Meredith immediately.”
She also thought Meredith’s focus on strengths was noteworthy.
“Helping women identify their strengths was what impressed me the most. I loved the core components that we want our graduates to have when they leave here,” McMahon said. “I loved the fact that Meredith students are becoming strong women who will graduate and make a difference.”
Before joining the Meredith community, McMahon served as registrar at Ohio Wesleyan University for nine years, and worked for 11 years in Franklin University’s registrar’s office.
“There are a lot of similarities between Meredith and Ohio Wesleyan, but what I have been doing now is learning the Meredith way,” she said. “Every institution has their own way of doing things. There is never a registrar position that is completely interchangeable.”
One focus has been on learning the resources available to Meredith students. “I’m learning what the potential pitfalls are for our students so I can help them navigate those issues,” she said.
Student service and compassion are important to McMahon, especially when ensuring that students are in compliance with the college catalogue, which is one of the most important roles played by a registrar’s office.
“Sometimes we are having to deliver difficult news,” McMahon said. “It is important to make sure you have that human side, understanding that there’s a person on the other side of that issue.”
The registrar’s office staff have been essential to McMahon during her first months at Meredith.
“I have an extraordinary team. I am so impressed by the women in this office, who have been so welcoming and helpful,” she said. “It is a well-oiled machine.”
In addition to her experience in higher education, McMahon is an Army veteran.
“I retired from the Ohio Army National Guard after 20 years of service as a member of the 122nd Army National Guard Band,” she said. “I played the flute and the piccolo for the duration and served as a platoon sergeant for most of my career. I joined after high school so I could receive education benefits and attend college.”
She and her husband, Travis, have a 10-year-old son named Dominic. The family is getting settled in their new home and are looking forward to living a short drive from North Carolina’s beaches. They enjoy camping and being active in the local YMCA. McMahon also enjoys baking and creating new desserts.
Here on campus, McMahon has been enjoying getting to know students, faculty, and staff. She encourages campus community members to feel free to contact her if they have any issues.
“I would like everyone to know that I’m pretty open door and accessible,” she said. “I would rather take five minutes to answer a question than to spend hours trying to figure out why something went wrong.”