Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) honored Washington State University’s Matthew Jeffries as the recipient of the Doris Michiko Ching Award for Excellence as a Student Affairs Professional. Jeffries serves as director for the Gender Identity/Expression and Sexual Orientation Resource Center (GIESORC) on the Pullman campus.

The award recognizes mid-level student affairs professionals who demonstrate an outstanding commitment to the profession by creating environments that promote student learning and personal development. It was renamed in 2016 to honor NASPA’s first minority female to serve as chairwoman on its board of directors.

“I am humbled to receive recognition for work that is critical for helping students succeed,” Jeffries said.

In his role at WSU, Jeffries supports system-level change at all WSU locations in their creation and implementation of LGBTQ+ affirming policies and procedures. Additionally, he supports students and helps them channel their energy for activism into tangible, material change. Prior to becoming director at GIESORC, he worked in Academic Advising, New Student Programs, and Residence Life.

Jeffries has significant volunteer experience with NASPA, which began at the regional level where he served as the Multi-Racial KC (Knowledge Committee) regional representative. This role led to him becoming chair of the Region V Scholarship Committee, Region V KC Co-Coordinator, Gender and Sexuality KC regional representative, and Multi-Racial KC Co-Chair. As an active scholar, his research has focused on equity work, critical hope, and gender inclusive housing.

Jeffries was scheduled to be recognized during NASPA’s annual conference in Texas at the end of the month, but the conference was canceled due to coronavirus concerns. Colleen Dougherty, NASPA recruitment, engagement, and volunteerism coordinator, said Jeffries and other award winners will be honored throughout April via social media and blog posts. NASPA will host a virtual awards celebration watch party on April 30 when award videos will be streamed.