Sonja Ardoin

Clinical Assistant Professor
Program Director for Higher Education Administration

Sonja Ardoin is a learner, educator, and facilitator serving as as Program Director and Clinical Assistant Professor of higher education at Boston University. A proud first generation college student, Dr. Ardoin’s research focuses on college access and success, leadership, and career strategies in student affairs. She has nine years of experience in a variety of student affairs administrative roles and is active in the field with consulting, writing, and volunteering.

Dr. Ardoin is the author of The Strategic Guide to Shaping Your Student Affairs Career (Stylus, 2014) and contributes writing to Inside Higher Ed and ACPA and NASPA publications. She has facilitated over 40 presentations at national conferences, institutions of higher education, and other professional gatherings, with 20 being referred and over 20 occurring in the last two years. Dr. Ardoin has also facilitated leadership curriculum for over 20 different colleges and universities with over 1500 student participants. She currently serves as an editorial board member for the College Student Affairs Journal and the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice.

Dr. Ardoin is currently serving the NASPA Socioeconomic & Class Issues in Higher Education (SCIHE) Knowledge Community (KC) as the Co-Coordinator of the Professionals from the Poor & Working Class group and as the Region I (New England) KC Representative. In these roles, Dr. Ardoin is working to increase awareness and understanding of social class issues in higher education, particularly how social class can influence the experiences of students, staff, and faculty. She organizes regional and national conversations and directs three work teams–job search, work environment, and research–around social class for the group.

Additionally, Dr. Ardoin serves as a facilitator of leadership and professional development curriculum for undergraduate students and higher education professionals. She is a co-lead facilitator for LeaderShape, Inc.’s six day program, called The LeaderShape Institute, and one-day program, called Catalyst; she also facilitates leadership curriculum for national fraternities and sororities such as Zeta Tau Alpha, Delta Gamma, Lambda Chi Alpha, and the National Interfraternity Council. These roles allow her to travel around the U.S. and North America to work with undergraduate students to cultivate their leadership capacity. Additionally, Dr. Ardoin serves as a facilitator, keynote speaker, and consultant with several colleges and universities on topics such as leadership, supervision, first generation students, and social class identity.

Ph.D. in Educational Research and Policy Analysis, North Carolina State University
M.S. in Higher Education and Student Affairs, Florida State University
B.S. in Secondary Education, Louisiana State University

AP 550, Perspectives of Higher Education
AP 551, Current Issues in Higher Education
AP 552, Leadership, Ethics, & Values in Higher Education
AP 755, Legal Issues in Higher Education
AP 801 (Part I & Part II), Professional Development Seminar
RS 652, Qualitative Research Methods

As a first generation college student from a poor and working class background and a higher education scholar-practitioner, Dr. Ardoin focuses her research on social class identity in higher education; college access and success, particularly for first generation and rural students; student and women's leadership development and practice; and professional preparation and career paths in higher education. She produces publications in the form of books, book chapters, journal articles, conference papers, and academic blog posts.

Dr. Ardoin is the author of The Strategic Guide to Shaping Your Student Affairs Career, a text that is utilized by over 25 higher education master's programs. She is contracted for two forthcoming books--a single-authored book on college access for rural, first generation, working class students and a co-authored book, with colleague Dr. Becky Martinez, on social class in the academy--and is currently contributing chapters in four other books, three chapters on social class topics and one chapter on student affairs career transitions. Additionally, Dr. Ardoin is a member of a research team that is studying women positional leaders in PK-20 and how they view themselves as advocates or activists for other women. This team has produced two conference papers so far, both of which have been submitted for journal publication. Finally, Dr. Ardoin is engaged in additional scholarship through conference presentations, keynote speeches, invited talks, and consulting.

Dr. Ardoin has been recognized by two of her professional associations, being chosen for the Association of the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) Early Career Faculty Workshop (1 of 35 chosen nationally) and the NASPA—Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education Emerging Faculty Leaders Academy (1 of 7 chosen nationally). She was also featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Sonja Ardoin's Faculty Profile

REFEREED BOOKS

Ardoin, S. & Martinez, B. (under contract). Stories of social class in the academy: How people from poor and working class backgrounds navigate higher education. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.

Ardoin, S. (in press). College aspirations and access in working-class, rural communities: The mixed signals, challenges, and new language first-generation students encounter. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.

Ardoin, S. & contributing writers. (2014). The strategic guide to shaping your student affairs career. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.

REFERRED BOOK & MONOGRAPH CHAPTERS

Ardoin, S. (in preparation). Social class influences on student learning. In P. Magolda, M. B. Baxter Magola, & R. Carducci (under contract), Contested issues in student affairs: Dialogues about equity, civility, and safety. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.

Ardoin, S. (in preparation). Social class identity influences on leadership opportunities and practices. In K. Guthrie & V. Chunoo (under contract), Socially just leadership education. New York, NY: Peter Lang Publishing.

Ardoin, S. (in preparation). The journey from graduate student to new professional. In K. Walker, D. Kniess, & T. Cawthon (under contract), New directions for student services: Managing career transitions across the life span for the student affairs practitioner. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Ardoin, S. (in press). Straddling social classes: Helping working class students create a sense of belonging in both their hometowns and higher education. In G. Martin (Ed.) (under contract), New directions for student services: Social class identity in student affairs. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Ardoin, S. & Martinez, B. (in press). No, I can’t meet you for an $8 coffee: How class shows up in workspaces. In B. Reece, V. Tran, E. DeVore, & G. Porcaro (Eds.) (under contract), Job fit in higher education and student affairs. Washington, DC: ACPA.

Ardoin, S. (2017). Charting one’s own theory of leadership. In J. Dugan, M.A. Torrez, N. Turman, A. Barnes, & Associates (Eds.), Leadership theory: A facilitator’s guide for cultivating critical perspectives. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

REFEREED JOURNAL ARTICLES

Locke, L., Stier, M., & Ardoin, S. (Submitted 6/8/2017) “It was like gliding through”: Early college and college transition experiences of women from underrepresented and marginalized groups. The High School Journal (under review).

Locke, L., Broadhurst, C., Ardoin, S., & Johnson, J. (Submitted 3/17/2017) Leading from the middle”: Exploring stories of women working for change in PK-12 Schools. Journal of School Leadership (under review).

Ardoin, S., Broadhurst, C., Locke, L., & Johnson, J. (Submitted 12/13/2016) Peacemakers and rabble rousers: Women leaders as activists in higher education. NASPA Journal About Women in Higher Education (revise & resubmit).

REFEREED CONFERENCE PAPERS & PRESENTATIONS

Ardoin, S. (2017). Stop telling me to “have class,” “be classy,” or “act professional.” Let’s talk about how the higher education environment discredits & degrades poor and working class folks. Presented at the NASPA National Conference, San Antonio, TX.

Ardoin, S. & Martinez, B. (2017). No, I can’t meet you for an $8 coffee: How class shows up in workspaces. Presented at the NASPA National Conference, San Antonio, TX.

Ardoin, S., Sterritt, K., & Mattera, B. (2017). Supervision is a two-way street. Recognize your part in supervisory relationships. Presented at the NASPA National Conference, San Antonio, TX.

Ardoin, S., Carducci, R., Marine, S., & Means, D. (2017). Positioning yourself for the practitioner to professor pipeline. Presented at the NASPA National Conference, San Antonio, TX.

Ardoin, S., Martinez, B., Svoboda, V., Washington, J., & Segar, T. (2017). Being both: Integrating poor and working class roots with a middle class higher ed identity. Presented as a NASPA National Conference Preconference Session, San Antonio, TX.

Ardoin, S. (2017). Considering class & capital in student engagement opportunities. Presented at the John C. Dalton Institute on College Student Values, Tallahassee, FL.

Ardoin, S., Broadhurst, C., Locke, L., & Johnson, J. (2016). It's not just about creating noise: Women leaders advocate for change in higher education. Presented as a ASHE National Conference Session, Columbus, OH.

Broadhurst, C., Locke, L., Ardoin, S., & Johnson, J. (2016). Leading from the middle: Exploring stories of women working for change in PK-12 Schools. Presented as a University Council on Educational Administration (UCEA) National Conference Session, Detroit, MI.

INVITED CONFERENCE KEYNOTE ADDRESSES

Ardoin, S. (2017). Women in leadership. Presented at the University of North Carolina Wilmington Women’s Leadership Conference, Wilmington, NC.

Ardoin, S. (2016). Relating recruitment to life after college: How to sell your sorority experience to future employers. Presented as the University of Illinois Panhellenic Recruitment Kickoff, Champaign, IL.

Ardoin, S. (2015). Never say never: Strategies for utilizing both intentionality and spontaneity to shape your career path. Presented at the Southern Association of College Student Affairs (SACSA), Greenville, SC.

INVITED UNIVERSITY TALKS

Ardoin, S. (2017). Social class complexities influence our life experiences: Have you explored yours? Presented for the Boston University Rhett Talks [like TED Talks], Boston, MA.

Ardoin, S. (2017). Exploring the complexities of social class identity to increase class consciousness. Presented for the Boston University School of Education Faculty Retreat, Boston, MA.

Ardoin, S. (2017). Developing class consciousness in higher ed: Recognizing how class identity impacts the student experience. Presented for the Stonehill College Division of Student Affairs, Easton, MA.

Ardoin, S. (2017). First gen is not my only identity: Framing first generation student experiences. Presented for the University of North Carolina Graduate School and Carolina F1RSTS programs, Chapel Hill, NC.

INVITED UNIVERSITY WORKSHOPS

Ardoin, S. (2017). What is social class identity and how does it show up in your field? Presented for the Boston University School of Education Graduate Student Orientation, Boston, MA.

Ardoin, S., Sterritt, K., & Mattera, B. (2017). Supervision is a two-way street. Recognize your part in supervisory relationships. Presented for University of Vermont Department of Residence Life, Burlington, VT. [two day consulting visit]

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