Mary Messina is a junior pursuing a triple major in international studies (concentrating in peace, conflict and identity), political science and French. She is a Levine Scholar and the founder of Students in Mediation, providing student opportunities to practice and learn mediation and conflict resolution. In addition, Messina is a college mentor for kids and is involved with the University’s English Language Training Institute.
Can you share your reasons for participating in the English Language Training Institute?
I feel all people share a duty and responsibility to give back! I have had the esteemed privilege to make a lasting difference at Charlotte. In particular, my time with the English Language Training Institute allowed me to help diverse students that do not have English as a first language. This organization provides opportunities to practice and learn the language, so students feel unencumbered in their academic career.
What do you love about UNC Charlotte?
I love how massive this city is with diverse interests and opportunities for involvement. There is always new stuff to discover and there is no limit or “boxed in” feeling. Our campus provides students, regardless of their background, the ability to start something new for themselves and grow.
What three words describe UNC Charlotte best?
Encouraging, connected and vibrant.
What advice do you have for new students?
1.) Do things that you might not like. Do not say no because of inexperience. Try whatever presents itself.
2.) Somewhat paradoxically learn how to say no. You cannot do everything. It is better to prioritize an activity or something you care about and allocate 100% effort into narrowed interests.
What's a fun fact about you many people may not know?
I obtained a Congressional Award before I was able to legally drive!