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Moral, Ethical, and Spiritual Issues

For me, the moral, ethical, and spiritual competency is one of great importance.  I believe that as a professional in student affairs, I need to understand how my values and spiritual beliefs influence how I do my job and interact with people around me.  I truly believe that my impact on students' lives flows from my relationship with Christ.  I hope to be an example and role model for students by making choices consistent with my beliefs and morals and by taking ownership of my decisions, whether positive or negative. 

My Personal Commitment to God and Why I want to Work in Student Affairs

Being a Christian in a Secular Environment

Discipleship Groups/Mentoring Relationships

Worship Nights in Engstrom Hall at APU

Devotions with My Staff and the Women RAs

Codes of Ethics Guiding Student Affairs

My Personal Commitment to God and Why I Want to Work in Student Affairs:

My relationship with Jesus is the sole most important part of my life.  I believe that I am God's beloved daughter, which influences how I make choices and interact with other people.  In my life, I have experienced God's grace and love for me.  In many ways, my desire to work with college students stems from my relationship with God.  Although I was raised in a Christian home, I grew and learned a lot about myself and my values the most during college.  I asked a lot of questions about my faith and how to make it a true part of my life, especially when I discovered that many issues do not have a black and white answer.  On the whole, I learned that God loves me as I am - with all my weaknesses and points of brokenness.  My relationship with God has been a journey of many ups and downs.  Yet, God proves Himself faithful over and over again to me.  It is because of Him that I want to work with students, especially college students.  College was a time in my life where my relationship with God was taken to a deeper level, and I saw God work in tangible ways.  I truly believe that college is one of the most life changing times in people's lives.   Because of this, I pray that God will give me the chance to impact people for Him simply by being an accepting and loving person towards them. 

As a student affairs professional, I want my focus to stay on helping students see their value and worth.  I want to walk alongside of students as they struggle through their own questions, life situations, and overall development.  More than anything, I hope that my life can be an example of God's love and grace to the students I am given the privilege to interact with.   I believe my passion and love for students is also communicated in my philosophy of students affairs; because of my belief that God has created us all uniquely with gifts and talents, I want to be someone who can speak truth into students lives encouraging their individuality and giftedness. 

My Philosophy of Student Affairs

Being a Christian in a Secular Environment:

One of my long term goals in student affairs is to work in a secular environment.  For one year during my time in the CSA program, I had the opportunity to work at Cal Poly Pomona Foundation Housing Service.  From the start of my time working at Cal Poly, I saw the need for professionals who really care about students, who are not willing to compromise themselves to move upwards in rank, and who live their lives as an example to students by doing the things they tell students to do.  At times, I struggled to be in an environment that seemed against some of my beliefs, yet at other times, I saw God open doors to conversations with students that were simply incredible.  For example, I had a student come and knock on my door once to ask questions about "faith" and "God" because she had seen a tattoo of a "Jesus fish" that I have on my lower back.  During my time at Cal Poly, I was able to have conversation after conversation with students about my faith because of the questions they would ask about why I chose to live my life the way I did.  Although I am currently working in a Christian environment, I want to one day be back at a secular school, working with students who otherwise may never experience the love of God.

Discipleship Groups/Mentoring Relationships:

One of the ways that I have worked with students at Azusa Pacific University is in the context of small groups and mentoring relationships.  Last year (2003-2004), I met with a woman because of an accountability/judicial issue.  During our meeting, we talked through what had happened and also that God was ready and waiting to give her grace regarding the situation.  It was an accountability meeting that an RD can really only dream of!  After the meeting, I received a note from the woman thanking me for talking with her and still accepting her even though she had made some poor choices.  Over the next month or so, we continued getting to know each other.  She eventually approached me about leading a d group (discipleship group) with her and some of her friends.  I had the privilege of meeting with four women throughout the rest of the year.  During our times together, we talked about life, held each other accountable, and read through the book Abba's Child by Brennan Manning.  This was a time where four women, who were at the start of their journeys with Christ, were able to simply ask questions about themselves and God.

Review of Abba's Child

Abba's Child at Amazon.com

Worship Nights in Engstrom Hall at APU:

One way that I sought to bring a spiritual element into my job at Azusa Pacific University (APU) was encouraging my Resident Advisor (RA) staff to create an environment allowing students to be real and worship together in community.  My staff came up with the idea of hosting a worship night.  Our first worship night consisted of several different cultures' worship styles being presented.  The students in Engstrom Hall loved it!  We spent time worshiping God through singing, scripture reading, and prayer.  The idea of worship night caught on, and my residents asked if it would be alright if they continued to have monthly worship nights.  It was so exciting to me that my residents wanted to continue being together in community and take ownership of this themselves.  As a result, my RA staff and I were able to support our residents in hosting worship nights throughout the second semester. 

"Worship Night" Schedule

Devotions with My Staff and the Women RAs:

One of the things that I value in my job at APU is being able to be honest and upfront about my faith in God.  Because of this, I take seriously the opportunities given to me to talk with my staff and the women RAs about their own faith, how God loves them, and how they can focus on God in their leadership.  I have given myself the challenge of presenting development opportunities to my students focusing on God.  One of the things that I did with my staff was a devotional on leadership coming from God.  I presented the devotional to them along with a challenge to figure out what leadership meant to them.  I gave them time to write out their thoughts for themselves and them come back together to talk things through as a group.  I have also had the chance to talk with all the women RAs.  During a women's day retreat, I spoke to the women about beauty and finding their worth in being who God created them to be.

Devotional on Leadership

Codes of Ethics Guiding Student Affairs:

As a professional in Student Affairs, I believe it is important that I am familiar and aware of the codes of ethics of various professional organizations.   One of my hopes is that I will remain conscious of the ethics set forth by those leading the field of Student Affairs.  American College Personnel Association (ACPA) and National Association for Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) are the two leading Student Affairs organizations; because of this, I want to make sure that I know what they stand for and promote.  I also believe that it is important for me to understand the values of ethics of the organization for which I work.  Currently, I work at Azusa Pacific University (APU).  APU's four cornerstones are Christ, scholarship, community, and service; it is important to me that I am able to support and stand behind the ethics and values for the institution in which I work and give my time. 

National Association for Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) Standards of Professional Practice

American College Personnel Association (ACPA) Statement of Ethical Principles

Four Cornerstones of APU

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