Featured Colleague — Naja Williams

naja-williams-grove

By Wendy Jo Moyer

With a mom and many cousins in the education field, it was a natural choice for Naja Williams to choose a career at Valencia. Now, in her fourth year at the College, she just took on a new role as a financial aid specialist at West Campus on Monday, January 11, 2016. In her new position, she will also serve as an advisor for the Financial Literacy Ambassadors Program, which promotes financial literacy and responsible money management among the student body through peer-to-peer counseling.

Previously, she was an admissions specialist in the Registrar’s Office, where she also served as the team lead. According to her former supervisor and her nominator, Jason Horton, assistant director, admissions/records, “Naja has a teaching and financial aid background and uses her infectious personality along with her diverse knowledge and skillset to positively impact the work we do and the students we serve.”

Making the jump to financial aid will be an easy transition for her. “Naja served as a vital resource to the student services advising and academic advising teams as well as our financial aid department as our offices’ first line of support to these areas,” Jason explained. Her depth of knowledge and ability to assist multiple learning styles has made her a pivotal member of the West Campus team.”

Her new supervisor, Kenya Richardson, assistant director, financial aid services, shared, “I am very excited and honored to have Naja joining our team. I believe that we can use Naja’s positive energy, skills and talent in taking our team to new and amazing heights. Our team is really looking forward to working with her.”

Naja has loved working at Valencia because of her colleagues and the high energy and fun her roles have provided. “The family atmosphere that we have here at Valencia inspires me to work harder,” she conveyed. “I love working with the variety of students that I interact with. I have several students who will stop me or I will stop them to check on their progress and make sure that they know they have someone in their corner.”

To her, like many employees, Valencia has inspired her, too, as she helps students improve their lives. “I feel that Valencia College makes me better by seeing that the work I complete allows people to better their lives and inspire their family and friends to reach goals. Valencia displays an integrity that many across the world have now been able to see and admire.”

Naja believes that Valencia brings hope and inspiration to the community to reach for a brighter future. “Passing the billboards that Valencia College has across the area gives people the hope to start something enterprising in their lives,” she said.

Originally from Washington, D.C., Naja enjoys traveling and helping in the community, especially volunteering to help people with special needs. In fact, she has served as a basketball and bowling coach for the Special Olympics. “I love the competition,” she said.

She recently adopted two kittens, which have slowly, she says, turned her into a Cat Lady.

Know of someone doing great work at the College, who has been an employee for one year or more? Send the colleague’s name to us at The_Grove@valenciacollege.edu. He or she might be one of our featured colleagues, subject to supervisor’s approval.

1 Comment

  • Beverly MooreJohnson said:

    Way to go Naja! 🙂

    AMWed, 13 Jan 2016 07:40:28 +0000Wed, 13 Jan 2016 07:40:28 +0000am16,7:40 am

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