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DJ Hardwick

DJ Hardwick is a higher education and student affairs administration graduate student at SUNY Buffalo State College in Buffalo, New York. Additionally, he serves as a graduate assistant coordinating leadership development and student engagement programs. DJ is passionate about creating inclusive, engaging, and welcoming environments for students navigating post-secondary education.

DJ brings several years of student affairs experience in a variety of functional areas including orientation, campus activities, assessment, and strategic planning. Previously, he gained experience at the University of Nebraska at Kearney and University of California Merced.

DJ is a professional member of the National Association for Orientation, Transition, and Retention in Higher Education (NODA), Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA), Student Affairs Assessment Leaders (SAAL), and The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP).

DJ has several research interests including the impact of queer temporality and heterosexual chrononormativity on success for LGBTQIA+ students, first generation student support, and leadership development for historically marginalized student populations.

Work Experience
August 2022 - Present

Student Engagement & Leadership Development Graduate Assistant

SUNY Buffalo State College

Student Engagement and Leadership

  • Assist in developing and facilitating the student leader training for all student assistants in Student Leadership and Engagement, United Students Government Executive board, and student leaders. 

  • Assist in facilitating workshops for the Bengal Stripes Leadership Program and Student Organization and Achievement Workshop Series (SOAR).

  • Support the Assistant Director of Student Leadership and Engagement on program assessment and review.

  • Support in the planning of small- and large-scale campus programs to increase student engagement and retention.


University of Nebraska at Kearney

General Studies, B.G.S.

Coursework: event planning, human resource management, counseling, marketing, and communications


SUNY Buffalo State College

Higher Education & Student Affairs Administration, M.S.

Coursework: student development, research, assessment, counseling and advising, diversity and inclusion, law and policy.

Leadership Experience

Title IX Process Advisor

University of Nebraska at Kearney

Office of Equity and Compliance

  • Assist complainants and respondents in understanding and navigating the Title IX investigation process.

  • Accompany complainants and respondents to administrative meetings, interviews, and pre-hearing investigations.

  • Serve on Title IX formal administrative hearing panels to hear witness testimony, review evidence, and provide recommendations for grievance decisions.

Awards & Certifications



Golden Loper Award

UNK Student Affairs Division / 2021

First Generation Trailblazer Award

UNK First Generation Leadership Board / 2021

Student Employee Rookie of the Year Award

UNK Applauding Excellence Committee / 2021

Teamwork Excellence Award

UNK Staff Senate / 2022

Legacy of Leadership Award

UNK Applauding Excellence Committee / 2022

Outstanding Senior Award

UNK Alumni Association / 2022



COVID-19 Detection, Prevention, Response, and Control Certification

World Health Organization / 2020

Notary Public Commission

Nebraska Secretary of State / 2021

Microsoft Office Specialist: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook

Microsoft / 2018

Event Safety Access Certification

Event Safety Alliance / 2022

Pathogen Prepared Professional Certification

Event Safety Alliance / 2022

Google Certified Educator – Level 1

Google / 2021

Violence Against Women Act Adjudicator Certification

National Association of Clery Compliance Officers and Professionals / 2021

HESAA Master's Program

NASPA & ACPA Professional Competency Areas for Student Affairs Educators


​As a Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration Master's student at SUNY Buffalo State College,
DJ will be reflecting on the 10 competencies for student affairs educators. Click the links below to learn more:

Featured Content
FBLA-PBL Farewell | 59:10
"Hope is in tomorrow, but reality is now"
UNK senior DJ Hardwick pays it forward
by supporting fellow Lopers

"Hardwick is always looking for ways to
improve the student experience at UNK"
First-Gen student organization
creates a badge of honor at UNK

"Hardwick is soft-spoken, yet his words carry the kind of
weight that causes people to pause and listen intently"
Bringing Life to CTE through CTSOs | 1:20
"Developing students into career-minded
youth leaders through CTSOs"
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