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Diane Strawbridge ('80, '02M)

Director of Student Retention for the Centennial Scholars Program

Photo: Diane Strawbridge

Diane began her Madison Experience as an undergraduate. Today, she is James Madison University's director of student retention for the Centennial Scholars Program and has been a part of the Harrisonburg community for 35 years. During those years, she has dedicated herself to mentoring JMU students from underrepresented backgrounds. A special challenge came her way when she became the director of the university's Centennial Scholars Program. The program offers financial help, academic encouragement and campus involvement for promising freshmen and transfer students. In addition, graduate students in the program provide mentorship, leadership and encouragement. She attributes her interest in helping students to lessons learned during her undergraduate studies in psychology. And she says the master's degree she earned at Madison prepared her for leadership, problem solving and critical thinking, which are vital components in her current position. Diane's caring assistance has made a difference in the lives of students and prepared them for the opportunity to Be the Change in their own lives.

"I have devoted my professional life helping to empower students to fulfill their dreams and to attain the goal of a college degree. It is my passion!"