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Cameron Hill Wins National New Student Orientation Award

For the past ten years, Cameron Hill has dedicated her professional life to the success of new and current students.

Currently serving as the Associate Director of New Student Programs, she has impacted the transition of thousands of new students at NC State since she began on campus in 2010. From enhancing existing programs to creating new opportunities for students in their first year, she is recognized by colleagues for her collaboration and innovation, and this recognition extends well beyond the boundaries of our campus. Recently, the Association for Orientation, Transition and Retention in Higher Education (NODA) recognized Cameron as the 2017 Outstanding OTR Professional, representing the highest honor bestowed upon professionals in the fields of orientation, transition and retention (OTR).

NODA is an organization for higher education practitioners and scholars whose purpose is to foster successful student transition and development. The mission of NODA is to provide education, leadership and professional development in the fields of college student orientation, transition and retention. The Outstanding OTR Professional award honors outstanding exceptional contri butions to the orientation, transition, and retention profession through the development or enhancement of a model orientation, transition, and retention program that meets the varied needs of students and notable regional or association-wide leadership.

Hill’s background in serving the transitional student population is extensive; during the course of her tenure with New Student Programs, Hill has demonstrated exemplary leadership and an unwavering commitment to welcoming and supporting the individual needs of each student who elects to join the Wolfpack family. She has been the driving force behind the development of several key programs targeted to better reach and support students where and as they are, introducing new opportunities to recognize diverse populations and include entire families in the college-going process. Under her guidance, New Student Programs has greatly enhanced the university’s orientation program to include a robust series of initiatives to welcome and inform first-year, international, and transfer students, and their parents. Hill has also driven efforts to increase inclusion and sensitivity practices on campus, integrating awareness and educational training into new student programming. She has collaborated closely with campus partners to realign the university’s Pack Pride program, incorporating issues of critical relevance for the campus community including stereotyping, microaggressions, cultural appropriation, and privilege.

What is perhaps Hill’s most impactful and far-reaching work has been her efforts to extend the reach of New Student Programs beyond orientation and Wolfpack Welcome Week activities to support students throughout the entirety of their first year on campus. Having identified an essential need to provide outreach and services for new students beyond the first few days on campus, New Student Programs has successfully implemented new opportunities such as an alternative service break trip designated for first-year students, a new student job fair, and Pack Connections, a continuation of the well-received peer group discussion program that takes place during student orientation.Hill was nominated for the award by her colleagues in New Student Programs, including director Michael Coombes. Says Coombes, “Cameron’s legacy at NC State can be seen in the relationships she has forged with colleagues and students, her innovative approach to meeting the needs of each new student, and her ability to see each student as an individual with their own story and path to success.”

Hill’s achievement was recognized in November at NODA’s Annual Conference in Louisville, Kentucky.