Student engagement is more than a title for Kelsie Nabass

A look inside the life of Student Engagement Specialist Kelsie Nabass.

James McCraw, Office Manager/Reporter

As she looks outside the window of her personal office inside the Office of Student Life, Kelsie Nabass looks at the hustle and bustle of the many people walking outside the College Center building. It’s like a fishbowl when her window is open. Sometimes Nabass people watches to see the outside world. Because of her hectic job at Pierce College Puyallup as the Student Engagement Specialist Nabass rarely has time to relax.

“It feels like I don’t have any spare time,”she said, “I advise the Activities Board; we have six event coordinators on campus, I oversee their operations. I also advise the Clubs Board and I run the Identity Culture and Inclusion program.”

Her Outlook calendar looks like a game of Tetris, with various multi-colored blocks filled in each day with the class schedules for OSL members, and time blocks filled in for the multiple events and meetings that go on each day that she has to attend.

Nabass attended Pierce College Puyallup in 2010-2011 when she was a Running Start student and worked in the Office of Student Life, and then attended the University of Washington, Tacoma for three years where she studied communications and marketing. Nabass also had the chance to go to Jordan and visit family for two summers after graduating. She went looking for marketing jobs after college, and was very interested in finding marketing in Architectural field.

“I like architecture. I never studied it but I always was so mystified by it because I love modern architecture,” Nabass said.

She’s now interested in possibly going back and furthering her studies in Student Affairs, and could possibly see herself being a department head or a director in student affairs in universities in the Middle East, possibly back in Jordan, where she says they don’t have many extracurricular programs.

Her family is of Circassian descent, which is now the area that’s modern day Georgia around the Caucasus Mountain region. Her ancestors migrated to Jordan to escape a genocide around 1864 and aren’t of Arab descent.

“I’m as white as it gets,” she said. “I’m the original Caucasian.”

Nabass’ family is a huge part of her life.

“I’m a big family time type of person,” Nabass said. “If I can visit family on the weekends that’s a good use of time to me.”

She has an older brother, who is a PC game software developer. Her father is a regular jack-of-all-trades. He owns his own trailer repair company, including chassis repairs. He’s also a software engineer and is very passionate about computers, but because of his labor background, doesn’t get taken seriously in the software field. She has a goal to have five children after she gets married, which, according to her plan, will be by 33. Three girls and two boys is her goal. She hates odd numbers and her favorite number is three. She loves her cats, all four of them. Two of them are inside cats and two are outside. She loves Breaking Bad, Jesse Pinkman is her favorite character, and she says she’s seen the whole series at least four times.  Octopus is her favorite animal, and one of her favorite things in her office is a scientifically preserved octopus in a jar.

As an American Muslim, her religion has always been something that Nabass often has had to defend. Nabass says nothing in Islam has ever been modified or tinkered with, but it doesn’t mean that things involving her religion have been interpreted differently in times. She mentioned that even though extremist organizations like ISIS give her religion a bad name to the rest of the world, radical extremists taking their religions out of context is something that occurs in almost every religion. Nabass said that ignorant people are not worth her time and if they offend her or her religion, and she believes that they are not worth the reaction of her anger or sadness.         

“Typically I enjoy talking to people and explaining it if I have time,” she said. “I try to explain myself as short and concise as I can.”

Nabass loves her job, and loves interacting with the members of Pierce. She said that if anyone ever wants to have a conversation with her, the office door is always open and she loves to chat. However, if someone comes early in the morning, it wouldn’t hurt to bring a glazed chocolate cake donut for a snack.

The Puyallup Post is the award-winning news media of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2018. Find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube @thepuyalluppost

James McCraw

Student engagement is more than a title for Kelsie Nabass

by James McCraw time to read: 3 min