Meet the Queen of the Judgment-Free Zone

Planet Fitness may have trademarked the phrase, Judgment-Free Zone, but drop weights or grunt too loudly and you will get some free judgment On the other hand, the new ISE academic advisor Deanna Cardamone wants her students to know a few things. One, her door is always open, and two, her office is truly judgment-free. “I want everyone to feel comfortable coming to speak with me,” she shared. “Please stop by if you have any questions or just want to say ‘hi’ and vent about whatever is going on in your life.” It is the bonding with her students that Cardamone treasures. “It’s those moments and conversations that make me love my job.”

Cardamone’s first stop at NC State was to earn her master’s degree in college counseling and student development. While getting her degree, she worked as an assistant academic coordinator in the Academic Support Program for the Student-Athletes Department (ASPSA). Here she primarily worked with the men’s soccer, tennis and football teams providing student-athlete mentoring services.

Deanna Cardamone

During the three years between her time in the ASPSA and ISE Departments, Cardamone worked as an academic coordinator at Elon University for various athletic teams. She spent most of her time meeting with student-athletes to discuss their academic progress. “We would look at each class, discuss upcoming assignments and think of ways in which I could help support them,” she said. “Sometimes that meant meeting with students every week, scheduling tutoring or mentoring sessions and helping them find ways to manage their time appropriately.” 

This commitment level required that she know her student-athletes’ practice and competition schedules. By communicating with coaches and instructors when there were any conflicts, She could find solutions so everyone involved felt heard and supported. “The most rewarding part of working with student-athletes was building strong relationships with them and being someone they could come to whenever they needed support,” confided Cardamone. “I also really enjoyed watching them succeed in the classroom and their sport.” 

Now she has returned to NC State, which was an easy choice. “I was very excited about the opportunity to return to NC State since I previously worked here, and I received my master’s in 2017,” said Cardamone. “I’ve had extremely positive experiences both as an employee and as a student, so accepting the job offer felt like a no-brainer.” On top of her “Pack Pride,” she was also pleased to join the ISE department. “I visited the department during my on-campus interview and felt comfortable and welcomed,” she explained. “Two things I highly value in any work environment.”

Even though she is new to the department, Cardamone has some good ideas she wants to implement. “I plan to use my skills to create a holistic advising experience for our student population, continue to recruit and promote the department to increase enrollment, and coordinate a fun, positive, and educational summer program for high school students,” she shared. When Cardamone is not helping her students succeed, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, exploring the surrounding areas and attending sporting events. Cardamone grew up outside Raleigh, married her husband in 2016 and welcomed their first child in 2021 (she has many pictures). In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, exploring the surrounding areas, and attending sporting events.