"If I go to graduate school, I need to focus on research," Daphne Gutierrez said. She questioned out loud whether or not she should even go for higher education after her undergraduate years. Todd’s suggestions were filled with encouragement and provided just a glimpse at how he influenced students; especially Urban Scholars like Gutierrez.
Todd is the coordinator for the Urban Scholars Program. The Urban Scholars Program program provides scholarships to Milwaukee and Chicago high school students who excel in academics. He uses skills from experience, his bachelor's in business administration from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and master's in education from the University of Louisville to figure out creative strategies toward educational success.
When asked about the details of his position consists of, Todd relaxed back in his chair.
He took a long time outlining his job duties. He said that he does everything from budgeting and reading emailed questions students have about school to sitting down with them in one-on-one sessions. He provides time management and study skills to those who need an increase in their academic confidence: "swagademics," Todd called it.
Todd also said that the duties in the occupation was what really interested him.
"It’s not about the position: it’s about the work," Todd said. "I wanted to do the work: ‘coordinator’ is just the title, or position for the work that people do."
Kyle Shaffer, assistant coordinator of Marquette University’s tutorial services, said he worked with Todd for years. He admired Todd’s achievements within the program.
"Before (Todd) took the position, no one was guiding the scholars," Shaffer said. "He gives them a lot of direction."