Faces of LIFE – Patrina Smalls
Coaching Others for Success
Student: Master of Science in Positive Psychology
Staff: Admissions Counselor
It isn’t an exaggeration to say Patrina Smalls is multitalented. The New York City native has experience as a professional singer on and off Broadway, and she spent years working in the corporate world before bringing her skills to Life University.
Smalls is now an Admissions Counselor in the Enrollment Office and is also pursuing a Master of Science degree in Positive Psychology with an emphasis on Coaching Psychology. A family member who works at LIFE convinced Smalls to transition her career to higher education.
“I created programs where I had grants and used to help students get into college. I helped with tours, and I would do a lot of speaking on scholarships and things like that,” Smalls recalled. “Once she became employed at Life University, she said, ‘I think it’s going to be a great fit for you and what you do, and for your life.’ So honestly, that was my catalyst to come and join Life University, and it has been the best experience – to do what I love, to talk to students about life after high school.”
Smalls frequently visits high school classrooms in Georgia and Alabama, meeting students and sharing with them why LIFE is a good choice for their academic futures. She also speaks at conferences about the University and its programs, particularly LIFE’s Bachelor of Business Administration and Bachelor of Science in Biology degrees.
“I have an MBA, so business is my other heartbeat. Biology is as well, and it’s the heartbeat of Life University, especially with the chiropractic program,” she said. “So that’s what I do. I tell them about Vitalism, why it’s important and how it’s changed my life. I get to talk about the different departments and just really let people know about this small school with a big bite.”
Smalls said part of being successful at her job is “finding students that belong here” and helping them achieve their goals at LIFE and beyond. That translates to her other passion: coaching people on how they can be their best selves.
“Success for me is peace of mind and doing what I believe I was created to do, and that’s what I get the opportunity to do as a student and as an employee here,” she described.
One piece of advice Smalls has for Life University students is not to be afraid to ask questions.
“One of the major things for me was asking questions and not being intimidated to say, ‘I don’t know’ or ‘I’m not sure’ or ‘I need clarity,'” Smalls explained. “The professors are phenomenal. I have not met any professor that did not stretch me. You’re going to be put in positions where it’s not going to be a comfort zone. Ask more questions. Seek more answers.”