Autumn Cartagena

Academic Advisor


Office:0340 Gerdin
2167 Union Dr
Ames IA


I began my adventure as a Cyclone in 2001 as a freshman majoring in psychology. I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up, but I had told people at my graduation parties that I was majoring in psychology, so that’s what I did. While taking classes in psychology, I also explored classes in other areas and got involved on-campus through my residence hall and various clubs. I even got to coordinate a full week celebration for all the students living in the dorms!

During my senior year, I took an experimental course in cultural psychology and also worked in the lab of a professor who did cross-cultural research. With the encouragement and support of the faculty member, I applied for graduate school and found myself pursuing my M.S. in psychology.

When I reflected on my academic experiences, I realized that although part of my personal, professional, and academic success was due to my hard work, another significant portion was due to the people (e.g. advisors, professors, supervisors) who had encouraged and guided me along the way. I knew I wanted to try to see if I could find a way to do the same for others and I found academic advising!

I’m currently serving as an academic advisor for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. My responsibilities include advising Open Option students, helping coordinate our orientation course (LAS 101), and working with students in our Summer Trial Program. I also helped found and continue to be involved with a student group on campus called We Cypport Our Troops (and Each Other), an organization for students with an affiliation to the Armed Forces.

When I’m not on campus, I enjoy spending time with my spouse (also a Cyclone!) and two young kiddos—checking out new parks, going to the library, trying new restaurants, and napping. Lots of napping.