Saint Martin’s student selected for internship program in higher education

December 6, 2011

SanchaPhotoLACEY, WASHINGTON—Saint Martin's University senior Sancha Elevado has been named one of 200 Undergraduate Fellows nationwide in a mentoring program operated by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA).

Elevado is the first student from Saint Martin's selected for the program, which empowers undergraduates from underrepresented groups to explore potential careers in student affairs and higher education administration. As a result of the mentoring program, NASPA aims to increase the number of historically disenfranchised and underrepresented professionals in the field, said Melanie Richardson, the University's dean of students.

"This is a prestigious honor that reflects well on both Sancha and the University," said Richardson. "She's been an outstanding leader here, and I think she has a promising future in higher education."

Elevado said she is excited and grateful for the opportunity. “Being a NASPA Undergraduate Fellow is going to open many doors for me. It gives me hands-on experience that only a few students get to undertake before graduate school.”

Richardson, who will be mentoring Elevado, said Elevado has a range of internship duties, one of which includes assisting the University develop a service component of its Catholic Benedictine student leadership program. The program, established in 2010, encourages students to place in practice the Benedictine values that are integral to a Saint Martin's education, she said.

Elevado says she also plans to participate in NASPA’s four-day summer institute and summer internship program, which offers her a campus-based experience at a university other than her own.

Elevado is currently in the process of applying to graduate schools to pursue a master’s degree in higher education administration and student affairs, hoping to eventually earn her doctorate in the field.

For further information, please contact Richardson at 360-438-4367;

Saint Martin’s University is an independent four-year, coeducational university located on a 380-acre wooded campus in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 14 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 21 majors and six graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes 1,250 students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its main campus, and 650 more to its extension campuses located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Everett College, Centralia College and Tacoma Community College. Visit the Saint Martin’s University website at

For additional information:

Melanie Richardson
Dean of students
Saint Martin’s University

Sarah Holdener
Director of community relations and event management
Office of Marketing and Communications
Saint Martin’s University