UHV Student Affairs leaders participate in national and statewide groups
Three University of Houston-Victoria Student Affairs administrators have taken on volunteer leadership roles in national and statewide associations that support the growth and advancement of student affairs professionals.
Jay Lambert, vice president for UHV Student Affairs, is participating in NASPA Student Affairs Professionals in Higher Education’s National Association of Supporting, Expanding and Recruiting Volunteer Excellence Academy, and also serves as the director for the NASPA Region III/SACSA New Professional Institute. Michael Wilkinson, senior director of UHV Student Services & Judicial Affairs, is serving in a leadership role within the organization’s region III. Brandon Lee, director of UHV Residence Life, is serving on the Texas Association of College & University Student Personnel Administrators Board of Directors. Their terms began this fall.
“I was encouraged by my colleagues to apply for NASPA’s SERVE Academy, and I’m privileged to have been offered the opportunity,” Lambert said. “Being involved with professional organizations such as NASPA is vital to be on the cutting edge as a student affairs professional. It’s important to build a network with colleagues in your profession.”
As a participant in the NASPA Serve Academy, Lambert will participate in a year-and-a-half long program for mid- to senior-level professionals, intended to help professionals improve in the areas of executive development, mentorship, association management and volunteer service.
“I believe leaders should get out there, attend conferences and actually get involved outside of their organization,” Lambert said. “For me, Brandon and Mike, that means we can learn new things by working with people who are from different parts of the country. It’s incredibly helpful for us.”
Wilkinson also will participate in the organization as a professional programs co-chair for NASPA Region III. He will serve as the primary point of contact for professional development programs.
“It is an honor to have been selected for this position,” Wilkinson said. “To be able to serve in this capacity for such a prestigious organization was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up, and it’s something I’m extremely excited about.”
Wilkinson has spent the majority of his professional career as a programmer, he said. He will be a valuable resource to the organization's Advisory Board, providing leadership and guidance in the site selection of the region’s programs, including, Summer Symposium, Mid-Manager’s Institute and the New Professional’s Institute. Wilkinson also will have the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues from across the Southeastern U.S. and abroad.
“This provides me the opportunity to learn what other institutions are doing successfully and bring that back to UHV,” he said. “I ultimately hope to enhance how we serve UHV students as a result of being the professional programs co-chair.”
Lee is serving as the director of assessment for the Texas Association of College & University Student Personnel Administrators Board of Directors. TACUSPA is a volunteer organization dedicated to the development, support and promotion of Texas student affairs professionals.
“I think it’s great that UHV supports personnel development, and our Student Affairs personnel are being recognized across Texas,” Lee said. “I’m excited about the future of UHV, as involvement in organizations like these not only provides leadership opportunities, but they benefit the university as well.”
Lambert joined the university in 2013 after nine years as assistant vice president for student engagement at Lamar University. He leads UHV Student Affairs, supervising Lee and Wilkinson.
“I encourage our team to take full advantage of getting involved in organizations so they will have other people they can call upon, ask questions to or run things by,” Lambert said. “We try to learn from every professional development opportunity in order to best serve our students. Just this past summer we offered professional development opportunities on-campus for all Student Affairs staff in mental health first aid and for intercultural development.”
The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973, offers courses leading to 70 bachelor’s, master’s and specialist degree programs and concentrations in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as a teaching center in Katy, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities, and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.