MEd in Educational Administration (Higher Education)
“In my current role as registrar at Iḷisaġvik College, I am dedicated to serving the students here, to provide quality post-secondary academic and career education in a learning environment that perpetuates and strengthens Iñupiat culture, values, and traditions.”
- MEd, Educational Administration: Higher Ed
Where did you grow up?
I was born in American Sāmoa and left when I was four. I grew up in San Diego, California for more than half my life. I lived in Honolulu for the last ten years of my life with my family. There’s a piece of home for me in all these places.
Where do you live now?
I currently live in Utqiaġvik (Barrow), Alaska. I relocated to Utqiaġvik with my family on June 13, 2022 for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work for Alaska’s only Tribal College at the northernmost part of the United States. It is such a beautiful and unique place to be, and my family and I are very grateful for the opportunity to be here.
How did you become interested in the field of educational administration?
The University of California, San Diego’s Thurgood Marshall College (TMC) Student Affairs Office is where it all began for me. I was a first-generation college student who needed all the guidance and support I could get. My first-year student internship at the TMC Student Affairs Office was the beginning of my journey in educational administration. I loved it then and still love what I do now in educational administration.
Where do you work? Please detail your role.
I am the Registrar at Iḷisaġvik College. I oversee the Admissions and Registration Department, the campus record keepers. Something I find very special about our department is the fact that we see all students at the beginning of their academic journey through until the end of their journey, whatever it may be.
How has the COE program impacted or benefited your career path?
The EDEA program is one of the best programs at UH Mānoa with some of the warmest and most brilliant faculty members like Dr. Wright, Dr. Reyes, and Dr. Lucas to name a few. Having the space to learn alongside other practitioners and students in education was a very empowering experience. It gave me the additional tools and confidence needed in myself and in my work to do better and be better academically, professionally, and personally.
Is there anyone in particular who inspired you to pursue a career in education?
My family has always been the core of my inspiration. I grew up in a single parent home with my mother and older brother in southeast San Diego. I understood that doing well in school would only add value to my life and the lives of those that I love. Having a career in educational administration is near and dear to my heart because of the difference it has had in my life personally.
What are your future visions and goals?
I always strive to lead by example and to do so as honestly and effectively as I can. In my current role as registrar at Iḷisaġvik College, I am dedicated to serving the students here, to provide quality post-secondary academic and career education in a learning environment that perpetuates and strengthens Iñupiat culture, values, and traditions. I want to continue to learn and grow, whether it be taking a few classes here and there for advanced skills or finally applying for a PhD program. Wherever my next steps lead me, it is important for me to advance into educational administrative spaces where I can foster educational excellence and ensure equal access for all students.
Anything else you would like to include?
I have never been so cold in my life! Lol. However, I can assure you that it is the people, indigenous Iñupiat culture, and life indoors that make this place so warm.