ron alexander & doing the work

Ron AlexanderRon started a new job as the Assistant Director of Residence Life and Student Conduct at Northwestern in May — in the midst of a pandemic and just before protests against racial violence began across the U.S. Both of these events directly impact Ron’s work both now and in the fall. Despite all the turmoil, he remains collected and more motivated than ever to create an inclusive environment for Northwestern’s students. 

Ron and Lougan worked together at Belmont, but Lougan was not able to join this interview so Jenna caught up with him to talk about his history as a campus organizer and whether it’s possible to address public health and racial justice at the same time. We also discuss Ron’s work as a tour guide and organizer for Black travelers and where he wants to go once travel resumes.

Ron holds a master’s in college student affairs from the University of West Georgia and is currently pursuing an Ed.D. in student affairs leadership at the University of Georgia.

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russell lowery-hart & empowering students to succeed

This week we discuss the barriers faced by low-income students with Dr. Russell Lowery-Hart, president of the Amarillo College. In his time as president, he’s overseen significant increases in student retention and graduation rates while also working to make his institution an economic driver for the community and region. On the show, Dr. Lowery-Hart shares how Amarillo College made such radical change happen and the many opportunities for higher education to break tradition and adapt to a changing world.

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kevin singer & the IDEALS research

Kevin Singer is a PhD student in higher education at North Carolina State University where he serves as a Research Associate for the Interfaith Diversity Experiences and Attitudes Longitudinal Survey (IDEALS). He also serves as Co-Director of Neighborly Faith, an org helping evangelical college students to build bridges of friendship with people of other faiths, and teaches world religions at two community colleges. IDEALS recently released a national report called “Friendships Matter” about befriending people across all faiths. Lougan and Kevin talk about consequences of online behavior as well as empathy in conversations one might disagree with. When he’s not in higher ed, he’s hanging out with his wife and their 4 kids.

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dave eng & the power of gaming

Dave Eng HeadshotThis week, Dave Eng returns to the show! Since last we talked, Dave has finished his doctorate and serves as a clinical professor & educational technologist at New York University’s School of Professional Studies and a professor of practice of table top game design at Troy University. We chatted with Dave about his research into table top gaming, the future of voice technology and Lougan’s tendency to not throw away things. We also discuss escape rooms and the fundamental differences between puzzles and games.

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kelsey ryan & the whereabouts of zac efron

Kelsey Ryan the coordinator of fraternity and sorority life at University of Memphis. After deciding that pharmacy school wasn’t for her, she chose a career in student affairs working with fraternity and sorority life. Kelsey is a true advocate for Greek Life on campus, and we discuss how Greek organizations contribute to the community and how a few bad apples can tarnish the good work of others. 

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shanna carmack & the tape deck editor

Shanna Carmack and her son smiling into the cameraShanna Carmack is the director of residence life for Carson-Newman University in east Tennessee. In this week’s episode, we talk to Shanna about getting acclimated as a new director in her first year at a university and how much a mentor can make a difference to an up-and-coming administrator. Shanna also lends us some insight on what it’s like to raise a child—in a residence hall!

 

 

 

 

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