Jordan Anderson, VP of the AYA Ambassadors

Campus in fall with foliage

Students walk to class in front of Withers and Daniels Hall. PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD


Jordan Anderson is a junior majoring in environmental technology and management from Durham, NC. Find out more about Jordan in our interview with him!

Jordan AndersonWhat is your involvement on NC State’s campus?

My involvement on campus consists of primarily the AYA Ambassadors for the African American Cultural Center, where I am the vice president for the 2016-2017 school year. I’m also involved with the African Student Union and their drum team. I also help out with PEACE Church and Every Nation Ministries on campus.

Why do you think a diverse student body is important at NC State?

Diversity, especially on a large campus like this, is important because we need to educate one another about ourselves. And that’s not just the people that you feel comfortable around, it’s having the conversations and getting to educate yourself about different cultures people from different backgrounds that will help you not just today but also in your future endeavors… carrying it into the workplace or any other organizations.

What is your advice to younger students?

Really, my advice would be to continue to share your talents and your interests with others. There’s always somebody out there who’s interested in the same things that you are, might not have that voice to express themselves. So seeing an example to help them breakthrough would be very influential… even if you don’t know who that certain someone is. And also, just not being afraid to share your perspectives in having conversations with people you might not be comfortable around. Hopefully you might have words that’ll have a positive influence on someone else.

Who has been a mentor to you, and how they have helped you?

Mama Thorpe and John Miller IV were among the first to swoop in and get me involved with the AYA Ambassadors and the AACC during my first visit during Symposium. Even before Symposium was over and classes started, they had instilled into me the knowledge of my value and purpose and helped me take the steps towards knowing where I wanted to go over the next few years. It is because of them that I had experience with working on the committees for Blacks in Wax, Ebony Harlem, Harambee, “Whats on the Table?” and other events early on in my college career to give me the drive to stay involved and to help make an impact on campus. Over the past few years, I’ve worked alongside Kinesha Harris in many of the stated programs, and she helped me to explore other sides to my leadership potential. And while they’re not still here with us, Dr. Witherspoon and Dr. Clark, many of the things that their students went through, I feel like still apply to us here in 2016. And also I would say Jarami Bond helped me with getting settled and learning the ropes, especially from an academic standpoint, as a new student on a large campus.

What have been some of your most impactful experiences here at NC State?

As for some of my most impactful experiences, I would have to say it was seeing the face of a student (not of African-American descent) during one of our last sessions of “What’s on the Table?” as he had a realization about the racial climate and why African-American students are upset about the systematic discrimination we face regularly. On a lighter note, my highlights also include the many authentic good times I’ve had at Witherspoon with my campus family due to the fact that we’ve laughed, cried, danced, joked, conversed, and most importantly, loved and supported each other through our college journey.

Austin Butler, ’18, communications intern in the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity, interviewed Jordan Anderson.