Jordyn Roark, from Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, graduated in the spring of 2018 with a degree in social work. During the time of her graduation she was serving as the Coordinated Entry Lead for all homeless services in Robeson, Scotland, Bladen and Columbus counties. Jordyn also worked full time as the Marketing and Community Outreach Coordinator for United Way of Robeson County and as the Weekend Shelter Advocate for Southeastern Family Violence Center. She presented on homeless legislation and the needs of students experiencing homelessness at nine conferences around the country during her time at UNCP. Jordyn sat on the national committee addressing homelessness in higher education, was WRAL’s runner up for Philanthropist of the Year for 2017 and won UNCP’s Paying it Forward award for service in 2017. Jordyn really valued the personalized attention that she was able to get from the Honors College: “There is a strong sense of community, and the perks that come with being an honors college student, like housing in Oak, a laptop, and priority class registration have made my college career much easier to navigate and have really set me up for success.”
Jordyn worked with Dr. Tamara Savage to create her senior project, a service project addressing homelessness on college campuses. She wrote and received a grant from Kiwanis of Robeson-Lumberton to provide dorm bedding, towels, toiletries, and laundry baskets to students experiencing homelessness in the Public Schools of Robeson County who are graduating in May of 2018 and attending college.
After graduation Jordyn plans to continue working and immediately begin an advanced standing master’s program in social work. She advises honors students to get out in the community every chance that they get, whether it be through volunteering or just attending events where they can meet people. It will help to make UNCP feel like home and give them the opportunity to meet some of the most wonderful people. Her favorite memory was of Ms. Jolene who worked in the cafeteria and always knew Jordyn's name and would ask about life every time she came through her line. She said, “I think that she is a beautiful testament to what UNCP is. I really did get a personalized education where I was more than just a number and I have excelled as a result.” Jordyn was honored to receive the Outstanding Senior Award for UNCP’s 2018 graduating class.
Thesis: Homelessness in Higher Education: An Experiment in Providing Basic Necessities to Students as a Foundation for Educational Success
Faculty Mentor: Tamara Savage