My area of expertise is higher education and underrepresented populations, particularly first-generation college students. I facilitate numerous Strengths presentations for audiences including university staff, administrators, graduate and undergraduate students. When working with students, I craft my presentations to focus on how the StrengthsQuest assessment can help guide them in choosing best fits related to their major, career choices, and leadership opportunities. I also discuss how Strengths can lead to stronger, more personalized interviews, cover letters, and resumes. I present often to student teams and organizations, and those presentations encourage students to look at their Top 5 and apply them to serving the mission or goals of their group.
My work with administrators and university staff focuses primarily on viewing the Strengths assessment as a way to build stronger work teams. I help teams view the assessment as a way to gain insight on colleagues and build stronger relationships with each other, including their supervisors. I receive invitations to present at staff retreats, meetings, and orientations.
When I’m not doing strengths work, I serve as the Director of the First Scholars at Washington State University. I am responsible for implementing programming, counseling, and advising for first-generation college students. Other initiatives under my leadership include a living learning community for first-generation college students; professional development on first-generation student best practices; and the development of First-Generation Abroad which provides global leadership opportunities for first-generation students at WSU. As an undergraduate at Washington State University, I participated in TRIO Student Support Services and was selected to join the McNair Achievement Program. I graduated with an Honors BA in English and enrolled as a doctoral student in American Studies at Saint Louis University. I hope to develop an institutional culture of being more responsive to the professional needs of first-generation college students through use of study abroad opportunities and the Gallup Organization’s StrengthsQuest assessment program.