Alexandria Duffney, 30, is competitive by nature and loves a good challenge. These qualities have led her to her position as associate director of graduate admission at Wilkes University. Here she works with prospective students interested in enrolling in the nurse practitioner programs. She also works closely with faculty to understand the unique opportunities of these programs and how the field of nursing is evolving.
“Enrollment has different facets, but at the heart of my job, I create an environment where information is readily shared with prospective students and easily understood,” she explained.
Duffney is also an artist and owner of The Bhakti Collective where she creates unique home décor using concrete, wire, yarn and other textiles to create intricate statement pieces for the home. She travels to local shows where she sells her pieces.
By chance, the associate director found the field of admissions on her career path, but immediately after the first enrollment cycle fell in love with it.
“It felt good to help prospective students and families with a major decision that would shape the rest of their lives,” she said. She soon realized she missed the classroom so she sought her master’s degree while expecting a child and graduated in 2014, with her family, including her three children, by her side.
Her love of creating, coupled with a series of documentaries on African basket weaving she viewed, compelled her to build a loom, and her business began.
Duffney’s mentor is her boss, Joanne A.Thomas. “She has great business acumen, a sense of strategy and also a sense for art,” she said.
Duffney attributes much of her success to healthy sibling rivalry. As the oldest of three children, they push each other to be their best. “We always worked hard to set a new family ‘high score.’ My success is deeply associated with the support of my family, my competitive nature and a great distaste for boredom.” Her favorite part of the day is sitting and talking with her family at night, hearing their favorite parts of their day.
She often encourages herself by saying “we will be just fine,” she tries not to take anything personally, unless it actually is.
Duffney is grateful to her wonderful partner and three children for the support she receives from them and to her parents and in-laws.