Alexis Janda has been named associate director of George Washington’s Center for Alcohol and other Drug Education (CADE).
In her new position, Ms. Janda will run the daily operations of the office, as well as its outreach and peer education programming. CADE is the university’s prevention resource center for alcohol, drug and violence issues.
“This position is the perfect step for me,” said Ms. Janda. “I’m really excited to be here.”
Ms. Janda comes to George Washington from Fordham University’s Lincoln Center Campus in Manhattan, where she was the assistant director for programming and coordinator of alcohol and other drug education programs in the campus’ Office of Student Leadership and Community Development.
She has worked with middle, high school and college students in Maryland, Chicago and New York, including a stint as a house director for a fraternity at the University of Maryland, where she earned a master’s degree in higher education in 2010. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Creighton University in 2005.
Ms. Janda said she enjoys working with college students the most as they begin to figure out “who they are and where they want to be.”
“I think it’s such an amazing age and time in young people’s lives, and I love to be able to be a part of that,” she said.
Ms. Janda cited her conversations with students about their concerns with alcohol and drugs as some of the most rewarding experiences in her career.
“The students I’ve met with have felt very comfortable with me, so I’ve felt I’ve really been able to make a difference and have an impact on them,” she said. “It’s fascinating to learn about why students make the choices they make, and it’s really rewarding to try to help them make better choices and fully understand their decisions.”
At George Washington, Ms. Janda will begin her duties by getting to know the concerns and needs of the GW community. She said she wants CADE to be a resource for all students and not only when they are confronted with problems.
“I think everyone should feel welcome to come into CADE with a question,” she said. “It’s difficult for students to ask questions, and I’d love to remove that stigma.”
Assistant Dean of Students Tara Pereira said Ms. Janda will join her on a “listening tour” this spring, in which they will speak with students, faculty and staff about ways to enhance the effectiveness of CADE and help students make better decisions. They will then spend the summer evaluating and implementing the feedback they receive from the GW community.
“We are looking to really change the face of CADE,” said Ms. Pereira.
Ms. Pereira said Ms. Janda and CADE staff are “genuinely” excited about her arrival at George Washington.
“I think Alexis will have the ability to connect with GW students, which is such a crucial part of this job,” said Ms. Pereira. “People can learn the processes, but I feel like either you’re right for GW or you’re not, and I was able to see very quickly she was right for GW.”