Jones salutes outstanding minority students in Mississippi
By Kristin Nelson
Dr. Stacy Jones has been giving back to the UA community while serving in various roles within in the Division of Student Affairs at UA. She also has been recognized for her outstanding achievements in another organization: the Delta Nu Zeta graduate chapter of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., which recently sponsored an event to congratulate hard-working high school students.
In March, Delta Nu Zeta sponsored the annual Salute to Outstanding Minority Students program in Meridian, Miss., and Jones was selected as the keynote speaker. The program's organizer, Bobby White, heard of Jones's extended campus and community service initiatives and asked her to speak and encourage the students before they graduate high school and begin the next chapter in their lives.
"I like to encourage students and talk to them about things they need to be prepared for when they go to college," Jones said. "The speech was focused on the next phase of their journey."
Jones said she focused on the notion that failure is not always a bad thing. She told high school students stories from her past in order to show that sometimes failure is simply an opportunity to learn more about oneself. She also emphasized that learning skills at any point in your life will prove to be valuable, as will becoming involved in leadership opportunities.
"To me, it's an honor that someone thinks I have something to offer young people that they will accept and embrace," Jones said.
Jones has not always worked in Student Affairs. After graduating from The University of Alabama, she worked for several years as an artist for The Tuscaloosa News. She also held a part-time position with the Boys & Girls Clubs of West Alabama as a mentor. Jones said her desire to impact the lives of others led her to The University of Alabama in October of 1993, where she was able to combine the skills she obtained in college with her passion to work with students as she accepted her first role within the Division of Student Affairs: production manager for the Office of Student Media.
"It was a real transformation for me," Jones said. "This was my opportunity to give back something that I couldn't really find before. I can be there for all kinds of students, especially our minority students."
Jones later earned her master's degree and Ed.D. in higher education administration. Her current position as the associate dean of students in the Dean of Students office allows her the flexibility to invest in the lives of students here at UA, while also reaching outside of campus, like her recent opportunity to make a difference in the lives of minority high school students in Mississippi.
Jones not only works to enhance the lives of her students and colleagues on campus, but she takes every opportunity to share experiences with others, especially students, in hopes of encouraging the next generation of leaders.
This story is a part of Student Affairs Highlights, which spotlights students, staff, services and programs that are excelling within the Division of Student Affairs. View more stories at Student Affairs Highlights. Do you have a suggestion for a Student Affairs Highlights story? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your idea.