Approximately 2,300 female undergraduate students arrive on Azusa Pacific University’s campus each academic year. Representing more than half of APU’s undergraduate population, their collegial experience is marked by issues unique to them. Amidst the clutter of societal demands and cultural expectations, it can be a struggle to unearth the definition of a godly woman. For APU undergraduates, help arrives in the form of Nancy Quiñones, M.A., newly appointed associate dean of students.
Hired in May 2004, Quiñones supervises and manages the programs, services, activities, and staffing for important on-campus student services, including the Office of Career Services, Student Health Services, Multi-Ethnic Programs, Student Affairs, and Orientation. She also works with the associate vice president for student life in regard to student conduct, guidance, and discipline. But as the senior women’s administrator on the Student Life team, her contribution to the management of APU’s Women’s Resource Center (WRC) and her intentional interaction with female students emerges as potentially the most powerful.
Working with the WRC student director, Quiñones plans to emphasize leadership development for women and create a Christ-centered legacy for the center and its services. “We want to change lives,” she said. “The biggest single problem women face is forgetting that they are children of a loving God. We’re focusing on that message, because all the other issues are symptomatic.” Although her administrative role does not lend itself automatically to high levels of student interaction, Quiñones intends to rewrite that part of the job description.
“I will serve personally, creatively, and collaboratively,” said Quiñones. “I endeavor to serve each student relationally, striving to validate, encourage, and recognize every student. I look forward to connecting with undergraduates in a community of purpose.”
A Latina woman growing up in a predominantly African-American neighborhood, Quiñones understands the complexities surrounding diversity issues. She comes equipped with both personal and professional experience. She served as director for the McNair Scholars Program at Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, California, a post that allowed her to encourage underrepresented students to pursue graduate studies. She is also a former director for the Office of Student Transition and Minority Support at Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego, and graduate assistant registrar at Fresno Pacific University, Fresno, California.
“Nancy’s professional and personal experience has shaped her as the right leader for the future of student life at APU,” said Terry Franson, Ph.D., senior vice president for student life and dean of students. “Her love for Christ is evident in all aspects of her life and we are blessed to have her on the team.”