Welcoming a Duo of New Teammates: Amy & Brandie

Halloween is almost here, and we have news today that’s definitely a treat, not a trick: We’re welcoming two new professionals to the Presence and wider Modern Campus team!

Amy Cashbaugh, our newest software developer, brings incredible enthusiasm to our development team, meaning that she’ll help roll out exciting new features that modern learners and student affairs professionals alike will adore.

Brandie Ebert will support many of our more than 200 campus partners in using the robust features of Presence’s co-curricular toolkit to their fullest extents.

Let’s get to know the people behind the product. Below, Amy and Brandie tell us about their journeys that led them to Presence, their experiences as undergrad students themselves, and their goals for the future.

1. What led you to Presence?

Amy:

Prior to the pandemic, I had been working several jobs and struggling to make ends meet. A few of my friends in the tech industry mentioned software development and how they thought I would enjoy it. After studying code for some time, I realized that I’d found a career I was actually excited about!

Sometime after that, I came across Presence. As someone who deeply values helping others, I knew that working at Presence meant that I could help students in their future goals while simultaneously pursuing my newfound passion for software development.

Brandie:

I’ve loved the product from the first time I attended a demo… and through the implementation of Presence at my institution, I grew to love it even more. I’ve been able to see firsthand the problems it solves and have been able to use the technology to creatively address challenges.

When the opportunity to help other institutions implement and use the product was presented, I knew it was the right move for me. Additionally, my interactions with the Happiness Team have shown me a positive, always happy-to-help, team-oriented culture that I’m super excited to be a part of.

2. How do you see this position fitting into your future career? What benefits or experiences do you hope to gain from working at Presence?

Amy:

I’m looking forward to finding various opportunities to grow in my skills as a software developer while at Presence. As someone who is passionate about programming and eager to learn, I am thrilled to be working on a team with incredible developers and a positive environment. I’m confident that I’ll be able to gain knowledge and experience in my role at Presence, and that’s something I’m truly excited about.

Brandie:

After over a decade of working in higher education, I’m excited to be on the other side of the equation. This position offers the opportunity to use the knowledge I’ve gained and this amazing product to help institutions all over solve problems and improve the student experience. I’m excited to be able to have a greater impact and help students and student affairs professionals through this role.

3. Where did you attend school? What was your major(s)? Were you involved with any co-curricular or extracurricular activities?

Amy:

I attended Orange Coast College with a degree in nutrition and dietetics. While there, I found a yoga studio and community that I fell in love with. Being over 2,000 miles away from home, I spent most of my time there outside of school and it became a second home for me.

Brandie:

I attended Appalachian State University and earned a degree in music industry Studies. I was a resident assistant, avid football fan (go Mountaineers!), a member of multiple music ensembles (including the symphony orchestra and gospel choir), vice president of a student-run record label, a member of a leadership and service-learning community, and held vice president roles in  Alpha Omicron Pi and Sigma Alpha Iota.

I later attended graduate school online, earning an MBA from Herzing University.

4. Why are you excited to be a part of the Presence team?

Amy:

During my interview process, it became exceedingly clear that the work environment and culture at Presence is one of mutual respect and positivity. Hearing about the team really got me excited at the prospect of becoming a part of what’s going on currently at Presence, and getting to help provide tools for students in highly formative years is something I know I can wake up each day enthusiastic about.

Brandie:

I’m excited to be part of a team that goes above and beyond to be helpful and always does so with a smile and a gif. The overwhelming amount of support I received from my Happiness Experts during my time using Presence has left a lasting impression. I’m excited to be part of a team that is passionate about the work they do and about helping others succeed. 

5. What do you like to do outside of work?  

Amy:

I love spending time outdoors. I make an effort to be outside and in nature as much as possible. From spending my weekends camping, my weekdays hiking, and my vacations traveling to various national parks, I’m always making an effort to explore.

My other passion is yoga. It really helped me through some tough times in life, and I became a certified instructor in 2017. Last but not least, time with loved ones is of the utmost importance to me. I frequently travel back home to Michigan to stay close with my family, and I end up spending a lot of time in Los Angeles to see my friends as well.

Brandie:

I love spending time with my family. I have a wonderful husband and 9-month-old twins, and we enjoy checking out local breweries and going to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to visit our favorite dolphins and turtles. I also love to craft and decorate.

3 photos: Brandie smiling with her husband and Brandie doing yoga poses including a handstand

left: Brandie with her husband, Tim / right: Amy flexing her yoga skills

6. What is something you’ve always wanted to try? What are some goals you have in the future you’d like to accomplish? Why?

Amy:

I’ve always wanted to try surfing. As a California transplant, I feel like this should have happened by now, but I still have time! As for my goals, I look forward to refining my skills in software development and yoga, traveling to Bali and Singapore, and mastering more cooking recipes.

Brandie:

As a native Floridian, I’m a little obsessed with snow. I’ve always wanted to try skiing or snowboarding. I had plenty of opportunities in college to go but always put it off but I think it would be a fun experience.

I’d love to get a doctorate degree. It just seems like such a huge accomplishment and I think it would be cool to be the first person in my family to accomplish that task.

Welcome, Amy & Brandie! We’re thrilled to have you join us in our mission to make higher ed dreams come true.

gif animation saying 'welcome' in all caps
Jodi Tandet

About the author: Jodi Tandet loves writing and editing posts about the complexities of campus life as Presence's Lead Storyeller. She's also passionate about making homemade ice cream, forging peace agreements between her calico cat and lab/dachshund mix, and reading novels about estranged family members with shocking secrets. Learn how we can help get your students involved.

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