Melanie is inspired by the adults in her family who have returned to school, including her mother-in-law who earned her bachelor's degree from UMass UWW at the age of 63.

melanie desilva, marketing

Melanie manages marketing, communications and recruitment efforts for the University Without Walls (UWW). Prior to joining the UWW staff she served as Executive Director of MotherWoman, Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide support for mothers, particularly those experiencing postpartum depression, and to advocate for social and economic policies that support families and children.

She is inspired by the adults in her family who have returned to school to complete their college degrees, including her mother, who earned her AS in nursing in her 40s, her step-mother who earned her BFA and MFA in her 50s and her mother-in-law, who earned her bachelor's degree from the UMass University Without Walls in 2003 at the age of 63.

educational background

  • B.A., University of Massachusetts Amherst, Summa Cum Laude; Double Major: Social Thought & Political Economy, Communication; Minor: Women's Studies 
  • M.A., Communication, University of Massachusetts Amherst

academic interests

Arachnology; public policy; political science.  

personal interests

Melanie's life is probably quite similar to many of yours. It includes racing around to get everyone ready for school and work, packing lunches, running to the bus, driving a little too fast to work, working hard, driving a little too fast home, eating dinner, listening to her daughters fight about ridiculous things, some sighing and eye rolling, helping with homework, singing lullabies while trying not to fall sleep herself, a little housework, a little tv, and then waking up and doing it all over again. When she has time, she enjoys Tai Chi, hot Baptiste yoga, Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, funny, smart TV, and spending time with her husband, daughters, two rescue dogs, two cats, a chubby guinea pig, a snake and a tarantula.