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Sophomore Jalen Ellis accepted to STARS College

Jalen Ellis

Sophomore Jalen Ellis, a resident advisor with Housing and Residence Life at UNC Pembroke, has been accepted to STARS College.

STARS College is an initiative of the Association of College and University Housing Officers - International (ACUHO-I). ACUHO-I is a professional association that serves a global membership of higher education institutions representing all types and sizes.

STARS College is a three-day experience for undergraduate students interested in learning about the student affairs and campus housing professions. STARS College offers large group presentations, interactive activities, role play situations, self-evaluation, and small mentoring groups to educate participants about what a career in campus housing offers.

“When I received the email saying I had gotten into the STARS conference program, I couldn’t believe it. I was more than happy - I was astonished. This acceptance proves that becoming an RA was the best decision I made for my college career. This opportunity gave me the chance to know what I wanted to do with my life after college, which is to pursue a career in student affairs,” said Ellis.

Ellis is the first-ever student from UNC Pembroke to be accepted into the program, which is known for its extremely competitive application process.

STARS College accommodates up to 65 students of which each must show commitment from an on-campus mentor who will play a vital role in continued mentoring and exposure to the field after STARS College has concluded. Ellis has the support and encouragement of Housing and Residence Life leadership, including director Paul Posener and associate director Cynthia Redfearn.

“Having been in Student Affairs—and more specifically Housing and Residence Life—for nearly 25 years, including my time as a resident advisor, I know firsthand the tremendous impact that Student Affairs professionals have in helping to create meaningful and impactful engagements among students.

“When Jalen expressed his interest in applying to the STARS College, I fervently encouraged him to pursue the opportunity. Learning of his acceptance was exciting! My excitement came not only from the fact that this is indeed a great opportunity for him, but also from the fact that he shows such an active interest in a profession that truly holds the potential to change lives. It is humbling to know the work we do here inspires others to aspire to do the same,” said Redfearn.

Jalen is studying public relations with a concentration in African American history and is slated to graduate in 2020. He has been a resident advisor at UNCP since 2018 and aspires to ultimately become a chancellor of a college or university.