Associate Director for Diversity Enrichment Programs
University of Oklahoma
How did you become the associate director for diversity enrichment programs at the University of Oklahoma?
Diversity Enrichment Programs has had a positive role in my life at OU. DEP offered me a freshman scholarship and I was a student recruiter in the program for three years as an undergrad. When I started my career as a college admission officer for OU, I always had my eye on working in DEP. Previously serving both rural and urban students in Oklahoma prepared me for my current position. I have experience working with a wide variety of students and this better prepared me to serve the students we work with in DEP.
What made you decide to get into this field?
It became apparent to me that I wanted to help students have a positive college experience because I had such a wonderful experience at OU. My mentors encouraged me and gave me the space to become the person I am today. I wanted to work with students the same way I was mentored. Also, I believe a college education can put you and your family on a path to improve yourself in life.
What is your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part of this job is being their when students realize, “I can do this.” Seeing students get accepted and excited about their future at OU is worth all the travel, all the application reading, and the fighting for them. Seeing that look on their faces energizes me.
How has NACAC played a role in your career?
NACAC has been such a positive experience in my career. It opened up a whole new world in admission and recruitment. The mentors I have gained through NACAC have pushed and encouraged me to step up and apply for roles and positions that have given me tools to better assist my students and make me a better all-around advocate for my students.
How did you get involved with NACAC’s Guiding the Way to Inclusion conference?
I heard about GWI from a colleague that attended. They encouraged me to apply for an Imagine Grant and attend, so that’s what I did. When I attended I was the only person from my region at the conference, but that did not matter. The participants took me in and brought me along and really accepted me and I have not looked back. GWI is also the first place that I saw people of color in executive positions in our field. That was the first time I began to consider this as a career. The people I met at my first GWI have become my mentors and friends, the people I lean on when I need advice and encouragement. They encouraged me to get involved with Inclusion, Access, and Success committees and this led me to chairing the committee in my ACAC and serving on the national IAS committee. I want to encourage others that are in that same position that I was in. I want to be that person they can come to with questions or if they are looking for encouragement or someone that can give them career advice. Do for them what was done for me at this conference.
When you aren’t working, what do you like to do?
I’m an irrational University of Oklahoma football fan, so once September hits, I’m a college football FANATIC. I’m also a big history and politics nerd, so you’ll find me reading up on current events or watching the History Channel. And if I have nothing to do, you can find me hanging out with friends or watching science fiction movies.
If you could be any fictional character, who would it be and why?
BATMAN obviously! A billionaire playboy, he’s a ninja, detective, genius, and strikes fear in the hearts of criminals. He’s the silent protector and guardian of those that can’t fight for themselves.
Describe yourself in five words.
Loyal, Loveable, Easy-Going, and Fair.
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