January 26, 2015 at 10:41 am

Meet Sara Berens: Academic Adviser and Retention Specialist

Spotlight on: Sara Berens
Academic Adviser and Retention Specialist

Meet Sara Berens, She is from Lancaster, OH, which is about 45 minutes away from Athens. She attended Ohio University for a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting and drawing and was the first generation in her family to attend college. Following this, she went to Ohio State for a Master of Fine Arts in painting. After completing her first masters, she went back to Ohio University for a master’s degree in education.

Sara Berens

Sara Berens

When Berens completed her education. she began working for a year in a college personnel program and then decided to return to Ohio University to work as an adviser and a retention specialist in the College of Arts & Sciences.

She works with undecided students to help them make the most of their college experiences and figure out their paths in life. She also meets with struggling students encountering transition issues and helps them to strengthen their academic skills and progress toward graduation. Aware that college can be a confusing time for students, Berens acts as a helping hand.

As an academic adviser, she is accustomed to giving advice to students. However, the most valuable piece of advice she has received came from her painting professor at Ohio University. She was always nervous to start a piece on a white page. Her professor’s advice, “Just put something down.” He emphasized the importance of taking risks and getting out of one’s comfort zone. This relates back to the advice Berens gives students because she, too, tells students to put themselves out there and try new things.

Contact Berens at

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