Marcos Pineda ’16

A job in administration as a student worker inspired him to get his master's in higher education. 

When Marcos Pineda was a student worker in various branches of California State University, San Bernardino’s administration, he made an interesting observation. Some of his colleagues took the time to mentor each other and collaborate, and some of his colleagues did not.

The difference? The latter type made his job a whole lot harder. 

That’s what brought him to University of Redlands. Earning a Master of Arts in Higher Education, he reasoned, would give him valuable knowledge and increased expertise in the area of student services.

“It sparked my imagination,” he says.

From his “eye opening” first class, on the history of American higher education to later explorations of educational theory, the program, says Pinada, has been valuable beyond his expectations.

“It has opened up my perspective on how to see certain situations and how exactly we can help students. We have to think outside of the box and look into the research to see what has worked in other situations and how we can use that knowledge to advance our own institutions.”

Pineda recently secured a position at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona as the administrative support coordinator for the Ethnic and Women’s Studies Department. He hopes to use his acquired knowledge to serve students holistically as a higher education professional.

Pineda also dedicates significant time and energy to serving as an assistant regional director for the West Region of Sigma Lambda Beta International Fraternity, a multicultural organization. As assistant director, Pineda not only provides academic support to four chapters of the fraternity, but also plays an integral role in policy and procedural implementation. 

Pineda’s study of higher education and his work with his fraternity has served as a catalyst in his research focus on underprivileged minority students, Greek life and student retention.