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Swag Bender with Dr. Dariel "DT" Henry

Oct 10, 2019

Sonja Ardoin, Ph.D. is an author, learner, educator, and facilitator. She originates from "Cajun country" - the small, rural community of Vidrine, LA specifically - and is proud of her first generation college student to Ph.D. educational journey, with degrees from Louisiana State University, Florida State University, and North Carolina State University.

Sonja's career path includes experience in student activities, leadership development, community engagement, fraternity and sorority life, student conduct, and academic advising.  She made the move from full-time practitioner to full-time faculty member in 2015, but continues to view her professional role as that of a scholar-practitioner. Sonja studies social class identity in higher education; college access and success for first generation college students and students from rural areas; student and women’s leadership; and career preparation and pathways in higher education and student affairs.

Sonja stays engaged in the higher education field through presenting, facilitating, and volunteering with national organizations such as ASHE, NASPA, ACPA, LeaderShape, AFLV, Zeta Tau Alpha, Delta Gamma, and Peer Forward.  She is a contributor to the NASPA Center for First-generation Student Success advocacy group, the NASPA Socioeconomic and Class Issues in Higher Education Knowledge Community, and the AFLV Board of Directors. She also serves on the editorial boards for the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice and the College Student Affairs Journal and as a reviewer for the Journal of College Student Development.

Sonja contributes to literature through books, book chapters, journal articles, and blogs and enjoys reading the work of others.  She credits her love of reading to her grandmother, who always brought her to the local library as a child and challenged her to read the maximum number of books each week.   

Sonja also enjoys enjoys traveling, dancing and listening to music, reading, writing, sports, laughing, and spending time with people she loves.

Her new book, Straddling Class in the Academy: 26 Stories of Students, Administrators, and Faculty From Poor and Working-Class Backgrounds and Their Compelling Lessons for Higher Education Policy and Practice is currently available everywhere.