Student Life Staff

Ahmed Samaha

Interim Vice Chancellor of Student Life & Services

(803) 641-3411


"Don't sweat the small stuff."

Ahmed oversees the Division of Student Life & Services, the Student Government Association, and Leadership Programs.

Ahmed grew up in Key West, FL. He received his Bachelors of Arts degrees in History and Political Science both from Mercer University. He then attended the University of Georgia and received his Master's degree in Student Personnel in Higher Education. (Go Dawgs!)  Ahmed is currently pursuing a Doctorate degree in Student Personnel from the University of South Carolina Columbia.

Ahmed and his wife, Kathy, met in college and they have been married for 15 years! They have two sons, Drew and Tucker. Ahmed has worked at USCA for 17 years and absolutely loves working here.  When he's not at USCA, he can be found either reading, playing golf, watching reality shows, or enjoying one of his favorite things in life: sports!

 Fun Fact: Ahmed played 2 years of Division I tennis.

Andy Kabasele

Director of International Programs

(803) 641-3671


Andy works with international students, domestic students, faculty, and staff wishing to study abroad, and international initiatives.

Andy oversees the International Education week, International Festivals, Friends of International Students day, and International Student Orientation.

Andy has 20 years of experience in the field of international education. His areas of expertise include: immigration, international admissions, international students recruiting, programming and study abroad. He served at NAFSA Education Abroad Committee as consular liaison affairs officer.

In 2010, Andy was selected by NAFSA and the German Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts to attend the Baden-Wurttemberg Internatinal Educators Seminars. In 2015, he was part of the US Department of State Benjamin Gilman Scholarship program selection committee. He speaks fluently seven languages, and he has visited 36 countries.

Taifha Baker

Assistant Director of Student Life - Diversity Initiatives

(803) 641-3442


“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance. And equity is ensuring that everyone has access to the dance floor.”

Taifha oversees the Diversity Peer educators, Commuter Services, and all Heritage Month Celebrations: Black History Month, Women's History Month, Native American Heritage Month, LGBT History Month, Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and Latin Heritage Month.

Taifha is from Queens, New York. She received her Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies at St. John’s University in New York. Her passion for equity and justice led her to pursue a law degree at Georgetown Law in Washington, DC. While at Georgetown Law, Taifha utilized her legal skills to advocate for marginalized students. She has published articles in the Huffington Post and Georgetown Journal of Law and Modern Critical Race Perspectives that illuminate the issues underrepresented students face throughout their academic careers. Taifha is a new resident of South Carolina and looks forward to beginning this new chapter in Aiken with her fiancé, James. 

Kevin Nolan

Assistant Director of Student Life - Programming and Volunteerism

(803) 641-3611


“All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” Walt Disney

Kevin oversees Community Service Initiatives (Impact), Student Conduct, Fall/Spring Alternative Breaks, Family Day, Run for Roses, Volunteer Fair, and Freshman Orientation.

Kevin grew up in Nashua, N.H. He received his Bachelor of Science in Sport Management at Winthrop University.

Kevin and wife Paige recently added a little girl, Ellie, to their family. Paige and Kevin met at Winthrop University where they both were a part of the softball and baseball team. Kevin really enjoys playing golf, traveling with his family, and going to the movie theater. He really enjoys watching Marvel and DC movies.

Christian Medders

Assistant Director of Student Life

(803) 641-3766


“Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there” - Bo Jackson

Christian oversees Parent and Family Orientation, Greek Life, Student Organizations, and Homecoming.

Christian was born and raised right here in Aiken, South Carolina.  While attending USC Aiken Christian was able to experience many parts of the Student Life office from working as a student employee to taking trips to Disney and Boston with USCA Leadership Programs.  Christian loved his time here as a student and look forward to helping everyone else do the same!

Christian is currently working toward his Masters in Higher Education and Student Affairs at the University of South Carolina.  A few fun facts about Christian are he has been to 7 different countries and he loves to be outside.

Ana Carbajal-Martinez

Coordinator of Student Life

(803) 641-3776

Ana Carbajal-Martinez

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” - Dr. Seuss

Ana is over transfer orientation, our Pacer Union Board (PUB), Pacer Fanatics, and traditional events.

Ana was born in Veracruz, Mexico and raised in Saluda, SC. She is a USCA Alumni where she received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Management. As a student at USC Aiken, Ana was a student worker at the Student Life Office under International Programs. Through her collegiate career, she was also a part of various student organizations and studied abroad in France. Ana loved her experience here and could not be happier to start a new journey as Coordinator.

Fun Fact: Ana loves learning new languages, she speaks 3 and is learning 2 more.

Mandi Welch

Student Life Office Manager



Mandi was born and raised in Augusta, GA.  She has two beautiful daughters, Bailey and Hannah and is married to her wonderful husband, George.  Mandi has worked at USCA since June 2008 and feels like this is where she is meant to be.  She loves her job and can't imagine ever working anyplace else.  Mandi's hobbies are shopping, reading, sewing and baking.  Especially baking for her fellow co-workers.

Fun Fact: She likes to dance to loud music while cleaning her house.