Elon University Home

Darris Means

Associate Director for the Elon Academy
Powell House 206
2108 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
dmeans@elon.edu (336) 278-6285

Education

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Sociology, Elon University, 2005

M.Ed. in Counseling Education with an emphasis in Higher Education/Student Affairs, Clemson University, 2007

Ph.D. Student in Educational Research and Policy Analysis with an emphasis in Higher Education, North Carolina State University, 2014

Employment History

Associate Director for the Elon Academy (February 2007-Present)

Courses Taught

North Carolina State University Department of Leadership, Policy, Adult, and Higher Education, Raleigh, NC

 

Graduate Teaching Colleague                         Fall 2013

Foundations of Higher Education Scholarship and Research (Under the supervision of Dr. Joy Gaston Gayles)

Assist with designing an introduction to scholarship and research course for first-year doctoral students in the higher education program. Lead a session on qualitative research data collection. Support the instructor with setting up and maintaining the online course tools (Moodle).

 

Graduate Teaching Colleague                   Spring 2013

Professional Seminar in Higher Education and Student Affairs (Under the supervision of Dr. Audrey Jaeger)

Assisted with designing a capstone course for 18 master’s students in the higher education and student affairs program. Developed four lesson plans connected to the course’s learning outcomes and CAS Standards. Served as the lead instructor for four classes. Graded and provided feedback on class assignments, including serving as the primary grader for two assignments. Served as the primary out-of-class advisor to students.

 

Graduate Teaching Colleague                         Spring 2012

Administration and Finance of Student Affairs (Under the supervision of Dr. Alyssa Rockenbach)

Assisted with leading a course for 23 master’s students in the higher education and student affairs program. Developed lesson plans connected to the course’s learning outcomes and CAS Standards, specifically lesson plans on minority-serving institutions and grant writing. Coordinated guest lecturers for the course. Graded and provided feedback on class assignments. 

Research

Graduate Student Investigator                 January 2013-Present

Carolina College Advising Corps Research Study (PI: Dr. Paul Umbach)   

Collaborate with a research team to design a qualitative study; collect and analyze data to better understand the career and educational aspirations of rural, low socioeconomic high school students and the role of the Carolina College Advising Corps in developing these aspirations.

 

Principal Investigator                                 July 2012-Present

The Educational Engagement Experiences of Families of Underserved High School Students in a College Access Program

Lead a team of 3 co-researchers to design, collect data, and analyze data for a qualitative research study on the educational engagement and college access program experiences of family members of underserved high school students in a college access and success program.

 

Principal Investigator                                 July 2011-Present       

First-Year College Experiences of Underrepresented Students in a College Access Program

Lead the design, data collection, and analysis for a qualitative, multi-year research study on the first-year college experiences of 10 first college students who participate in a college access and success program.

 

Co-Investigator                                            September 2010-Present

A Qualitative Study of the Challenges to and Opportunities for College Access and Success for Underserved High School Students (PI: Dr. Mary Alice Scott)

Collaborate on a participatory action research study with a research team, including faculty, staff members, undergraduate college students, and high school students, about the barriers and opportunities for college access and success for underserved high school students.

 

Principal Investigator                                 July 2011-December 2012

Black in the Rainbow? Experiences of Black Gay Male Students at Historically Black Universities

Led the design, data collection, and analysis for a qualitative study on Black gay male students who attend historically Black universities. Wrote and received grant funding to support the research study.

Grants Awarded

Means, D. (2013). Demonized no more: The spiritual counterstories of Black gay male college students at predominantly White institutions, $1,500 research grant received from North Carolina State University’s College of Education to support dissertation research.

Means, D. (2012). The spiritual counternarratives of African American gay male college students at predominantly White institutions, $325 research grant received from Southern Association for College Student Affairs to support dissertation research.

Means, D. (2012). Spiritual narratives of Black gay men in higher education, $500 Love of Learning Award received from Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society to support dissertation research.

Means, D., Flinn, L., Long, D., & Wade, R. (2011). Successful transitions: Supporting underrepresented students to succeed in college and in life, $19, 891 federal sub grant received from the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities to establish programs and services to support college students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Means, D. (2011). Black in the rainbow? A study on the experiences of Black gay men at a historically Black university, $550 research grant received from the North Carolina College Personnel Association.

Long, D., Scott, M.A., Hassell, K., Pyne, K., Means, D., & LaPlante, K. (2011). Elon Academy Book Project, $5,050 grant received from Elon University’s Associate Provost Special Grant the writing of a book by students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Long, D., Means, D., Flinn, L., Williams, L., & Pyne, K. (2010). Elon University Summer Bridge Programs, $20,000 federal sub grant received from the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities to establish summer bridge programs for students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Means, D. (2010). Elon Academy College Admissions Workshop, $1,000 grant received from the Southern Association for College Admission Counseling to provide information regarding the college admissions process to high school students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Means, D. (2010). Elon Academy Book Jam, $2,160 grant received from Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society to sustain book clubs for high school students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Long, D., Means, D., & Pyne, K. (2009). Elon Academy Transitions to College Program, $14, 972 federal sub grant received from North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities to establish a transition to college program for students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Long, D., Roane, B., Gant, A., Hadley, R., Klopman, S., Massey, B., Means, D., & Williams, L. (2009). Go 4 College, $10,000 grant received from College Board Greenhouse Program to establish a program to expose and educate students about the college admissions process.

Means, D. (2009). Elon Academy Book Club, $2000 grant received from Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society to establish book clubs for high school students with a financial need and/or no family history of college.

Means, D. (2008). Elon Academy Business Partner Program, $10,800 federal sub grant received from the Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development Action Committee and Piedmont Triad Partnership to develop an innovative program to connect high school students with a financial need and/or no family history of college to businesses and organizations in the region through internships, field experiences, and a business mentor program.

Means, D. (2006). Deconstructing the racial wall: Examining racial segregation in higher education, $1000 research grant received from the Southern Association for College Students Affairs.

Publications

Refereed Articles

Means, D., & Jaeger, A.J. (in press). Black in the rainbow? “Quaring” the Black gay male student experience at historically Black universities. Journal of African American Males in Education.

Pyne, K.B., & Means, D. (in press). Underrepresented and in/visible: A Hispanic first-generation student’s narratives of college. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education.

Mitchell, D., Jr.,  & Means, D. (in press). “Quadruple consciousness”: A literature review and new theoretical consideration for understanding the experiences of Black gay and bisexual men at predominantly White institutions. Journal of African American Males in Education.

Means, D. (2006). The racial wall: An evaluation of social segregation between White and Black students on a predominantly White college campus. Palmetto Practitioner: Issues in Student Affairs, 4(1). http://www.sccpaweb.org/palmettopractitioner/2006/index.html

Peer-Reviewed Manuscripts under Review

Means, D. (under review). Voices from the inside: An institutional case study on campus race relations. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Other Scholarly Articles

Pyne, K., Scott, M.A., Means, D., & O’Brien, M. (2011). From individuals to agents: Youth participatory research as access to equity. Anthropology News.

Long, D., Means, D., & Pyne, K. (2008). College by design: A university-community partnership. Educational Leadership, 66 (2), 77-79.

Means, D. (2008, October). Research tip: Successfully presenting research at a conference. SACSA-lert. An electronic monthly newsletter of the Southern Association for College Student Affairs.

Duffy, J., & Means, D. (2008, Summer). Social justice from the perspective of a graduate student and a new professional. The Voice, 9. An electronic newsletter of the American College Personnel Association’s Commission for Social Justice Educators.

Manuscripts in Progress

Jaeger, A., & Means, D. Mixed methods research in higher education. [Expected Submission: September 2013]

Ulmer, L.W., Means, D., & Cawthon, T. Investigation of remedial education course scores as a predictor of freshman-level course performances. [Expected Submission: September 2013]

Presentations

Invited Presentations

Means, D. (2013, April). Intersections at Race and Sexual Orientation. Roundtable at the Elon University Diversity and Inclusion Roundtable Spring Discussion, Elon, NC.

Means, D. (2012, October). Beyond higher education: Implications for supporting the career development of underrepresented college students. Presentation at the North Carolina Career Development Association, High Point, NC.

Means, D. (2009, March). Sustaining our future: A university-community partnership to address college access. Presentation at the American College Personnel Association Conference: College Student Educators International, Washington, D.C.

Refereed Presentations

Jaeger, A., & Means, D. (2013, November). Mixed method approaches in higher education research. Paper to be presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, St. Louis, MO.

Means, D., & Pyne, K. (2013, November). “Who’s gonna survive” college: underrepresented students post-matriculation perceptions of college access capital. Paper to be presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Council on Ethnic Participation Pre-Conference, St. Louis, MO.

Means, D., LaPlante, K., & Miller Dyce, C. (2013, November). College access as a family affair: The educational engagement experiences of families of underserved high school students in a college access program. Paper to be presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Council on Ethnic Participation Pre-Conference, St. Louis, MO.

Means, D. (2013, November). The spiritual journeys and spaces of Black gay male undergraduate students at predominantly White institutions. Poster to be presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, St. Louis, MO.

Means, D. (2013, November). “Quaring” spirituality: The spiritual journeys of Black gay male college students and implications for student affairs. Presentation at the Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Norfolk, VA.

Means, D., & Bumbry, M. (2013, March). Spirituality, race, gender, and sexual orientation: When identities collide. Presentation at the American College Personnel Association: College Student Educators International, Las Vegas, NV.

Means, D., & Jones, M. (2013, March). Building bridges: College to career for underrepresented college students. Presentation at American College Personnel Association: College Student Educators International, Las Vegas, NV.

Means, D., & Pyne, K. (2012, November). After access: First-generation, low-income students of color and the shaping of the first-year college identities. Paper presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Council on Ethnic Participation Pre-Conference, Las Vegas, NV.

Means, D. (2012, November). Black in the rainbow? Findings on the experiences of Black gay male students at historically Black colleges and universities. Roundtable at the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Council on Ethnic Participation Pre-Conference, Las Vegas, NV.

LaPlante, K., Means, D., & Miller-Dyce, C. (2012, November). A phenomenological case study approach to understanding the experiences of families of underserved high school students in a college access program. Roundtable at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, Las Vegas, NV.

Means, D., & Cawthon, T. (2012, November). The rainbow’s other side: Black gay men in higher education. Presentation at the Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Memphis, TN.

Means, D. (2012, October). Black gay men: Implications for HBCUs and higher education. Presentation at the North Carolina College Personnel Association, Durham, NC.

Means, D., & Thomas, N. (2012, October). Learning what works for underrepresented college students. Presentation at the North Carolina College Personnel Association, Durham, NC.

Means, D. (2012, April). The intersection: The experiences of Black gay men who attend historically Black colleges and universities. Paper presented at the North Carolina College Personnel Association Graduate Student and New Professional Research Symposium, Greensboro, NC.

Pyne, K., LaPlante, K., & Means, D. (2012, March). College by design: Learning what works for marginalized students. Presentation at the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Philadelphia, PA.

Means, D., Pyne, K., Crutchfield, S., Torain, J., Garcia-Pena, J, & Tish, E. (2012, February). The journey to college: Perspectives from underrepresented high school and college students in a college access and success program. Presentation at the North Carolina College Access Conference, Durham, NC.

Means, D., & Jaeger, A. (November, 2011). Black in the rainbow? Preliminary findings on the experiences of Black gay male students at historically Black colleges and universities. Poster presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, Charlotte, NC.

Means, D., Scott, M.A., Pyne, K., Long, D., LaPlante, K., & O’Brien, M. (November, 2011). Findings in a participatory research project on the college barriers and opportunities for underserved high school students. Poster presented at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, Charlotte, NC.

Pyne, K., Scott, M.A., LaPlante, K. & Means, D. (November, 2011). Shaping identities, seeing futures: Learning about intersectionality and college access through participatory research. Paper at the National Association for Multicultural Education, Chicago, IL. 

Means, D. (2011, October). I’m not a racist: White students speak out about race. Paper at North Carolina College Personnel Association, Wilmington, NC.

Scott, M.A., Pyne, K., & Means, D. (2011, March). Transformations at the intersections: Preliminary findings in a participatory research project on educational transformation among underserved high school students in the Pre-College Academy. Paper presented at the Society of Applied Anthropology, Seattle, WA.

Means, D. (2010, November). New angles: A university’s approach to addressing access and success. Presentation at the Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Panama City, FL.

Means, D., & Williams, T. (2010, October). College access and success for underrepresented students. Presentation at the North Carolina College Personnel Association-North Carolina Housing Officers Joint Conference, Chapel Hill, NC.

Means, D., & O’Shea, B. (2009, November). Gay and Greek: Strategies to support LGBT students in fraternities and sororities. Presentation at the North Carolina College Personnel Association, Winston-Salem, NC.

Holloway, P., & Means, D. (2009, November). Navigating the highway to higher education: An analysis of college access. Presentation at the North Carolina College Personnel Association, Winston-Salem, NC.

Long, D., Means, D., & Swartz, T. (2009, April). Collaborating to replicate a college-access program. Presentation at the National Center for Summer Learning Conference, Chicago, IL.

Means, D. (2009, March). The call to action: A university-community partnership to address college access. Presentation at the American College Personnel Association Conference: College Student Educators International, Washington, D.C.

Johnson, K., Long, D., & Means, D. (2008, March). The Elon Academy: Education, leadership, outreach, now. Presentation at the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, New Orleans, LA.

Means, D. (2007, November). The Elon Academy: Transforming a community through a college-access program. Presentation at American College Personnel Association: College Student Educators International Conference on Tools for Social Justice, Kansas City, MO.

Means, D. (2007, November). Beyond rhetoric: A qualitative study on race in higher education. Presentation at American College Personnel Association: College Student Educators International Conference on Tools for Social Justice, Kansas City, MO.

Means, D. (2007, November). Deconstructing the racial wall: Examining social segregation in higher education. Presentation at the Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Dallas, TX.

Means, D. (2007, November). Our responsibility to the community: A university-community partnership. Presentation at the Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Dallas, TX.

Hammett, M., & Means, D. (2006, October). Spirituality of the millennials: Examining spiritual growth of college students through community service.  Poster presented at the Outreach Scholarship Conference: Engagement through the Disciplines, Columbus, OH.

Means, D. (2006, April). The racial wall: An evaluation of social segregation between white and black students on a predominantly white college campus. Paper presented at South Carolina College Personnel Association, Charleston, SC.

 

Professional Activities

American College Personnel Association

American Educational Research Association

Association for the Study of Higher Education

National College Access Network

Southern Association for College Student Affairs

Southern Association for College Admission Counseling

North Carolina College Personnel Association

Awards

Clemson University Outstanding Alumni for the Master of Education/Student Affairs Program, 2013

Southern Association for College Student Affairs’ Bobby E. Leach Award, 2011

American College Personnel Association’s Outstanding State and International Division Leader, 2011 

Elon University “Top Ten Under Ten” (Recognition of 10 young alumni), 2011                                                               

North Carolina College Personnel Association Committee Member of the Year, 2010                                 

Phi Kappa Phi Love of Learning Award, 2010                                                                                                                   

Elon University Fraternity and Sorority Advisor of the Year, 2009                                                             

North Carolina Triad Business Journal “40 Leaders under 40,” 2008                                                         

Alumni Commitment to Service Award (Elon’s Pi Kappa Phi Chapter), 2008                                             

Richard Riley Institute Diversity Leadership Award, 2007                                                                        

Clemson University Walter T. Cox Graduate Student Achievement Award, 2007                            

Clemson University Edward Grandpre Outstanding Graduate Student in Student Affairs, 2007             

Clemson University School of Education Graduate Student Excellence Award, 2007                                

William J. Brennan Graduate Assistant Fellowship for Order of Omega, 2006 

Association of Fraternity Advisors Graduate Staff for 2006 Conference (1 of 8 graduate students selected nationwide), 2006