Amanda Carpenter

Camarillo, CA., April 5, 2017 — CSU Channel Islands (CSUCI) Director of Student Leadership & Career Development Amanda Carpenter, Ed.D., has been recognized by the American College Personnel Association (ACPA), a national organization.

Carpenter is this year’s recipient of the Midlevel Community of Practice award, which honors excellence in mid-level professionals in student affairs and higher education.

The ACPA presented the award during the 2017 ACPA Convention held last month in Columbus, Ohio.

“In my 20 plus years as a senior student affairs officer, Dr. Carpenter stands out as one of the best mid-level professionals with whom I have had the opportunity to work,” said Vice President for Student Affairs Wm. Greg Sawyer, Ph.D.”

Carpenter also developed the internship program for the Henry L. “Hank” Lacayo Institute for Workforce & Community Studies (HLI), which has provided numerous CSUCI undergraduates with internships that often lead to full-time employment.

“I am humbled and honored at this recognition,” Carpenter said. “I see this type of recognition as a chance for me to serve as a role model for our students, and as a mentor.”

Carpenter conducts career and academic counseling with numerous CSUCI students who are the first in their family to attend college, just as she was.

Carpenter grew up in Ventura as the only child of a single mother who worked in food services. Carpenter’s mother was determined that Carpenter would attend college.

“I just remember her dragging me to FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) workshops,” Carpenter said with a chuckle. “I had no idea what she was doing. I remember my mom really pushing me and saying ‘You can do this.’ She didn’t want me to live paycheck to paycheck the way she did.”

Carpenter graduated from CSUCI in 2006 and after being inspired by a CSUCI faculty member in education, Carpenter looked into public and private universities where she could get a master’s degree in academic counseling.

She won an internship in counseling fieldwork at California Lutheran University, then got a job as an academic counselor and went on to pursue her master’s degree and then, her doctorate.

“During that time, I continued to find my passion and it led me toward working with first-generation students,” she said.

Since then, Carpenter has conducted research into first-generation college students, and began a program of “self-authorship” in which first-generation students used writing and storytelling to discover what they truly wanted to pursue as a career.

“I see this as coming full circle, she said. “It’s an opportunity for me to give back and share this recognition with our campus.”

# # #

About California State University Channel Islands
CSU Channel Islands 
(CI) is the only four-year, public university in Ventura County and is known for its interdisciplinary, multicultural and international perspectives, and its emphasis on experiential and service learning. CI’s strong academic programs focus on business, sciences, liberal studies, teaching credentials, and innovative master’s degrees. Students benefit from individual attention, up-to-date technology, and classroom instruction augmented by outstanding faculty research. CI has been designated by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is committed to serving students of all backgrounds from the region and beyond. Connect with and learn more by visiting CI's Social Media.