Student life coordinator works hard to improve Honors College

Trevor Ivan

When Kim Brown was an undergraduate at the University of Akron, she knew an administrator who pointed her toward the field of education. Now she has taken several steps toward a career in education and just started her new job as student life coordinator for the Honors College.

“I learned things from her that I wouldn’t have known otherwise,” Brown said. “I knew that when I went back to school for my graduate degree, I wanted to do something with education.”

After receiving her master’s degree in higher education administration from the University of Akron, she worked at Bryant & Stratton College in Cleveland as an academic adviser.

She then worked in the financial aid office at Kent State.

When Brown discovered the opening for a student life coordinator in the Honors College while doing an online job search, she said she was drawn to it because it involved coordinating student programming.

“I’m always looking for things that I’ve done previously or am interested in,” Brown said. “When I came across this position, I was like ‘hey, I’m going to do this.'”

Her new job allows her greater contact with people all over campus, something she didn’t do when she worked in the financial aid office, Brown said.

“I’ve been to several committee meetings so far,” Brown said. “My job enables me to interact with my colleagues who work in various departments all over campus.”

Larry Andrews, dean of the Honors College, said Brown’s job description includes coordinating student life and alumni relations for the Honors College. She will also be involved in advising honors students.

Brown’s position was created due to personnel changes in the Honors College, Andrews said. One faculty member retired last year, and several others were promoted, he said.

Andrews said Brown will be working to help the Honors College make a smooth transition into the new honors center opening next fall in Johnson Hall.

“The emphasis on student life is meant to give us a thrust at community building,” Andrews said. “We’re working to revitalize that living-learning community.”

Promoting the new honors center will be a major part of her job, Brown said. This type of center will be beneficial to honors students, especially for freshmen.

“When (students) live right down the hall from each other, they are able to ask each other for help or form study groups if they need it,” Brown said.

Brown will advise the Honors Community Council, a group of students who help plan events for the Honors College. Brown said she had experience advising a student group when she was a graduate assistant at the University of Akron.

Brown will work with students to make policies for the new honors center, Andrews said.

“When I worked in financial aid, the goal was to help students finance their education,” Brown said. “In the Honors College, my job is to help students with the academic side of their education.”

Brown said her ultimate goal in this job is to motivate students to be successful.

“I hope to be an important part of (students’) academic careers while in the Honors College,” Brown said. “I hope to be able to create success not only for them, but for the Honors College as well.”

Contact honors and international affairs reporter Trevor Ivan at [email protected].