Retention specialist recognized by student affairs association

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Aaron Jones joined UC Santa Cruz in 2016 to support the holistic success of ABC students.

Aaron Jones, a retention specialist for African, black, and Caribbean students, was recently recognized by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators for his service in its African American Knowledge Community.

Jones received NASPA’s Region VI Award for Knowledge Community Achievement for Collaboration and Visibility after serving for four years as a subregional and regional representative.

The student affairs association has 34 knowledge communities which provide access to information and resources in a particular subject area.

“Led by KC Representative Aaron Jones, the (African American Knowledge Community) has made great strides to increase their visibility, share knowledge, and engage student affairs professionals throughout the region,” wrote Region VI Knowledge Community Coordinator Molly Bechtel in a nomination letter.

She went on to note that the community developed a collaborative infrastructure and built a team of engaged student affairs professionals to support social media and events.

Jones joined UC Santa Cruz in 2016 to support the holistic success ofAfrican, black, and Caribbean (ABC) students through academic advising, counseling, and other assistance.

“Aaron has been a staunch advocate for the advancement of African/Afro-Latinx/Black/Caribbean students at UC Santa Cruz,” said Shonté Thomas, director of the African American Resource & Cultural Center. “In Aaron’s time at UCSC, he has aided in the implementation of Black Academy, an orientation program to support ABC first-year students, and he has facilitated professional development workshops regarding advising tools for ABC students.

“Aaron has been a great champion of equity and student success for students with minoritized identities and we are fortunate to have him as part of this team.”