Person of the Month: Dr. Stephanie H. McBrayer

Dr. Stephanie H. McBrayer is director of housing and residence life and BearCard at the University of Central Arkansas. “Finding meaningful ways to help students make the transition from high school to university, connect to the campus community, make new friends and thrive outside of the classroom is where I found my passion,” she said. “The on campus housing experience can contribute to and extend that learning and development in a unique way because we provide the students’ home away from home. The experience of living on campus is so much more than a place to sleep. I feel blessed to be a part of the team that has the responsibility to shape those on campus experiences at UCA!” (Mike Kemp photo)

City: Conway.

Work: University of Central Arkansas, director of housing and residence life and BearCard; 15 years at UCA.

Why did you decide to go into education: While at Arkansas State University, I had the opportunity to work as a Resident Assistant (RA) and it was my first exposure to student affairs and higher education as a career field. When I went to UCA to pursue my master’s, I decided to continue my path in counseling, but I also met all of the requirements for the college student personnel degree. During that time, I served as the hall director for Carmichael Hall. I was learning about student development in the classroom and putting it into practice with my position in the residence hall. That is when it clicked for me! I wanted to work with college students and help them have an impactful experience like I was afforded. I have been working on a college campus ever since!  

Church activities: New Life Church – Conway; greeter team.

Family: Husband, Todd McBrayer, safety director for Enterprise Products; two children, Luke McBrayer, 25, and Kati McBrayer, 21; and Camryn Joy, 6 months, our new baby – a mini Goldendoodle.

Education: Doctor of education, higher education administration, University of Arkansas Little Rock; master of science, counseling and college student personnel, University of Central Arkansas; bachelor of science, psychology with a minor in criminology, Arkansas State University.

Most cherished possession: If you’re talking material possession, it has to be my iPhone because it has my life on it including my calendar, email, notes, etc., but most importantly more than 15,000 pictures of my family, puppy, friends, and travel that I would not want to lose!

Most enjoyed weekend activity: Friday “date night” with my husband and spending time with my puppy, Camryn!  

Favorite quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Gandhi

What do you love about living in the 501: I have found my home in the City of Colleges. This community is the perfect size with all the great shopping and restaurants and easy access to Little Rock, Fayetteville and Memphis. I love the diversity and energy that the college students bring and how friendly and welcoming we have found everyone to be.