Career Center

Career Center Staff

Nadirah Pippen

Nadirah Pippen


M.S. Counselor Education, 2009
East Carolina University
National Certified Counselor, Former Licensed Professional Counselor

Joined UNCW Career Center in January 2018.

Professional Affiliations: NACE, SoACE, NCACE, NCDA 

Specialized University Committees:
Chancellor's Strategic Planning Team
IEP Chancellor's Advisory Committee
Provost Internship Advisory Council 
Student Success Committee
Applied Learning Working Group

StrengthsFinder: Input | Harmony | Maximizer | Empathy | Positivity


Chris Lewandowski

Associate Director for Career Development

M.A. Higher Education Administration, 2012
University of Mississippi

Joined UNCW Career Center in July 2021.
Professional Affiliations: NACE, SoACE, NCDA, SCACE, 

Liaison to Business & Accounting Sector (Accountancy, Economics, Entrepreneurship & Business Development, Finance, Human Resources Management, Information Systems, International Business, Management & Leadership, Marketing - Strategy, Marketing - Professional Selling, and Supply Chain Management).

Liaison to Liberal Studies & Interdisciplinary Studies.

Coordinator for Career Express, Meet the Firms, Resumania.

StrengthsFinder: Relator | Achiever | Learner | Harmony | Analytical


Janeè Folston

Associate Director for Employer Development

Senior Leadership Team Member

M.S. Systemic Family Therapy, Psychotherapy 2021
University of Saint Joseph

Joined UNCW Career Center in July 2022.

Employer Development: Outreach with a focus on F500, Government, Non-Profit, Entrepreneur, etc., Alumni Relations Outreach & Travel, Parent’s Council Outreach & Travel, Soaring Partners Program with a focus on corporate sponsorships, Military & Defense Relations Partner and Academic Partnerships.

Liaison to Employer Advisory Board members.

Event Planning/Coordination: Career & Internship Fair, Career Fest, Part-Time Job & Student Services Fair, Professional Etiquette Dinner.

StrengthsFinder: Responsibility | Restorative | Strategic Relator | Belief


Leslie Wright

Assistant Director

M.S. Education, Counselor Ed Track, College Student Personnel, 2001
Old Dominion University

Joined UNCW Career Center in November 2002.

Professional Affiliations: NCACE, SoACE, NACE, LCFHRA

Liaison to Social Sciences and Services Sector (Anthropology, Criminology, Philosophy & Religion, Psychology, Sociology and Social Work), Government & Non-Profit Sector (History, International Studies and Political Science), Government & Non-Profit Sector (Coastal & Ocean Policy, Conflict Management & Resolution, History, International Studies, Information Technology, Political Science, Public Administration). Liaison to International Students.

Coordinator for Law School Day, Big Interview, Career Shift, ePortfolio Program, First Destination Surveys, Peace Corps, GoinGlobal and Marketing.

Specialized areas of expertise:
Using social media in your job or internship search
The impact and use of mobile devices in your job or internship search

StrengthsFinder: Responsibility | Adaptability | Ideation Relator Learner

Stacey Huffman

Stacey Huffman

Assistant Director For Career Exploration

M.A. College Student Development & Student Affairs, 2016  
Appalachian State University

Joined UNCW Career Center in June 2016.

Professional Associations: NACE, NCACE, NCCDA

Liaison to Deciding Students, Exploring Students, Transfer Students, Early College Students & Graduates

Coordinator for Academic Majors & Minors Fair, CareerFest, University College Programming, Certified Internship Program, Orientation Presentations, Strengths + Careers, Front Desk & Event Sign-In.

Certified CliftonStrengths Coach 

Specialized areas of expertise:
Career Exploration

Career Assessments (PathwayU, O*Net Interest Profiler, MBTI)



StrengthsFinder: Harmony | Responsibility | Empathy Arranger Developer

Jacqueline Pitone

Career Development Counselor

M.Ed. College Student Affairs Leadership, 2018
Grand Valley State University

Joined UNCW Career Center in July 2018.

Liaison to Watson College of Education – Education of Young Children, Elementary Education, Middle Grades Education, Physical Education & Health K-12, Special Education, Teacher Licensure in Secondary Education & K-12.

Coordinator for Education Job Fair, Certified Internship Program, and Special Internship Programs: Disney Internships, State Employees Credit Union Fellowships Grant, Duke Energy Internships Grant, North Carolina State Internships Program, Campus to Career Internship Program.

StrengthsFinder: Futuristic | Positivity | Input |Communication | Achiever



Charles Ozuna

Career Development Counselor

M.A. Higher Education Administration, 2018
Rowan University

Joined UNCW Career Center in July 2018.

Liaison to Arts, Media & Entertainment Sector (Art History, Communication Studies, Creative Writing, Digital Arts, English, Film Studies, French, German Studies, Music, Spanish, Studio Art and Theatre), Science, Coastal Engineering, Engineering, Art & Math (STEAm) Sector (Biology, Chemistry, Digital Arts, Environmental Science, Environmental Studies, Geography, Geoscience, Geology, Marine, Biology and Oceanography)

Coordinator for Prepping for Grad School, Professional Branding Day, Writing Powerful Personal Statements, Multicultural Programs and Education Abroad.

StrengthsFinder: Communication | Woo | Empathy | Activator | Positivity

Ashley Navarra

Ashley Navarra

Office/Budget Manager

Associate of Applied Science, 2004
Randolph Community College

Joined UNCW beginning August 2007 and the Career Center in June 2015.

Supervises the Administrative Associate & Handshake Specialist and front office student employees, maintains financial spreadsheets and records, analyzes financial data and provide monthly budget reports, serves as the purchasing manager (processing purchase orders through uSHop and maintaining all annual subscriptions and memberships), processes travel and reimbursements through Chrome RIver, enters Electronic Personnel Action Forms, serves as the Hiring Coordinator (Assistant/Coordinator role in PeopleAdmin, scheduling interviews, processing travel for candidates, onboarding new employees), serves as office Leave Keeper, manages computer inventory and fixed assets.

Professional Achievements:
UNCW Staff Senate Communications Committee Chair, 2010-12
Committee of the Year, 2012
Senator of the Year, 2012
Most Likely to Go the Extra Mile, 2012
UNCW Level 1 Finance Certification, 2010

StrengthsFinder: Responsibility Achiever Relator Learner Developer


Employer Development Coordinator

Provides Support & Coordination for the Employer Development Team:

Employer Liaison
Handshake Support: Employers
Community Engagement
On-Campus Recruiting & CSB Mock Interviews 
Career Trek Coordinator 
Event Planning/Coordination: Career & Internship Fair, JCPenney Suit-Up Event, Professional Etiquette Dinner, Involvement Carnival (hosted by CAIC).



 James "Ricky" Patterson

Career Development Counselor

M.A. College Student Development & Student Affairs, 2016  
Appalachian State University

Joined UNCW Career Center in February 2020.

Liaison to Health & Human Services Sector (Athletic Training, Clinical Research, Exercise Science, Nursing, Public Health Studies, Recreation Therapy, Recreation, Sports Leadership & Tourism Management.)

Coordinator for RN to BSN Resume Project, Nursing Career Fair, NC Health Grad Programs Expo, Career Planning Guide & Marketing Committee.

StrengthsFinder: Maximizer Relator | Deliberative | Competition | Belief



Emma Ferry

Administrative Associate & Handshake Specialist

Joined UNCW Career Center in July 2021

Serves as the receptionist for the Career Center, manages pending accounts and job postings in Handshake, provides Handshake support to students, alumni, UNCW departments, and employers (helping with navigation, troubleshooting, accountant set up, event registration, and posting positions), monitors the Career Center email (, schedules appointments for UNCW students and alumni, processes daily deposits.

StrengthsFinder: Context | Connectedness Learner | Input | Empathy