Javance Sinclair II is driven by turning tough moments in students’ lives into opportunities for growth. When Northern Kentucky University’s Office of Student Conduct, Rights and Advocacy (SCRA) underwent a reorganization in August, he received a promotion from assistant director of student conduct to director of the new Office of Community Standards and Care, a position that will allow Sinclair to oversee the well-being of the student body.
He plans to use his new role as an opportunity to engage more with the campus community, focusing on outreach.
“We’re looking at specific programming that centers around questions like ‘What are our community standards?’ and ‘How can we hold ourselves accountable to uphold those standards?’” Sinclair says. “We want to create an atmosphere where students can come to appreciate our university’s values and can continue to uphold those values during their time here.”
Sinclair served as assistant director for nearly four years before his promotion, responding to reported violations of the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities and playing an integral role in NKU’s community care team. Since taking the job in 2018, he and his team have concentrated on making SCRA a welcoming environment.
“There are some students that I’ve seen come through our process that are now in their senior year or have graduated. I’m proud to know that I’ve been a part of helping them understand what they value, how that aligns with the university’s values and how they can move forward in attaining a degree.”
“We’ve built a sense where people don’t come here and think, ‘Oh, I’m always in trouble.’ It’s more of an office where if someone is in need, they know they can come to us,” Sinclair says.
He credits the relationships he strengthened between the office and campus partners like residence life coordinators and hall directors, as well as the leadership of Dean of Students Dr. Bob Alston, with creating this culture of care.
“There are some students that I’ve seen come through our process that are now in their senior year or have graduated,” he says. “I’m proud to know that I’ve been a part of helping them understand what they value, how that aligns with the university’s values and how they can move forward in attaining a degree.”
Before coming to NKU, Sinclair worked as a community director at North Carolina Central University, a role that centered on residential life and gave him the chance to serve as a hearing officer.
“That’s how I was able to get my first experience with student conduct,” he says. “As I got my groove, I realized it was something I wanted to pursue further. I love residential life, but within that area, you do a lot of work on larger engagement efforts like late night programming. For me, the community care aspect of the job really appealed to me, where I could sit down with an individual student on a one-on-one basis.”
Sinclair moved to the area in 2015 after receiving the opportunity to work as a residence hall director at the University of Cincinnati, where he learned more about the relationship between upholding community standards and ensuring student success.
“Even though we were working with students who were going through challenging experiences, we were able to learn from their behavior and eventually progress to graduation,” he says. “So that prompted me to apply once I saw the position for assistant director open up at NKU.”
As of 2020, Sinclair is also a student at NKU working toward a doctorate in education. His research examines the lived experiences of former foster youth and how those experiences inform their time spent in college. Passionate about volunteering, Sinclair’s own work with foster youth in the greater Cincinnati area was a major influence on his chosen field of study — even outside of his career, he is committed to helping students overcome adversity.