Skip Ribbon Commands Skip to main content

Oregon Center Staff

Jennifer Alkezweeny
NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon

Jennifer Alkezweeny joined the NELA® Center for Student SuccessSM in Oregon as manager in January 2012. She brings more than 15 years of experience working with students in higher education. She has taught a variety of courses on topics including college success, career exploration and public speaking. Additionally, she has worked in residence life, student activities, admissions, registration, advising, financial aid and service learning. She is passionate about students and has a strong background in student support, program management and curriculum design.

Alkezweeny holds a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from the University of Alaska in Fairbanks and a master’s degree in communication studies from Portland State University.

Adam Lucero
Program Adviser
NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon

Adam Lucero is the adviser for the Mentor 2 College® program at the NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon.  He received his bachelor’s degrees in history and geography from the University of Northern Colorado and holds a secondary teaching license.  As an undergraduate, Lucero tutored and advised students in programs such as AVID, Upward Bound and Gear Up, allowing him to realize his passion for serving at-risk students. 

After completing his undergraduate work, Lucero began his career teaching in suburban Denver.  Last year he relocated to Portland to serve as an AmeriCorps volunteer with a non-profit organization in Washington County where he focused on at-risk student outreach, volunteer recruitment and community involvement for a local middle school. 

As a first-generation college graduate, Lucero is committed to helping students and their families as they pursue their college goals. With over seven years of experience working in this field, he comes to the Center with a strong background in curriculum design, instruction, as well as youth and community outreach.

Kathleen McKenna
Mentor Coordinator/AmeriCorps VISTA
NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon

Kathleen McKenna is an AmeriCorps VISTA member serving at the NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon as the mentor coordinator. She relocated to Portland after receiving a bachelor’s degree in sociology and gender studies from American University in Washington, D.C.  As an undergraduate, McKenna worked on- and off campus with community groups to lead trainings and facilitate workshops on cultural competency and senstivity surrounding issues of race, class, gender and sexuality.

As a student, she advised prospective students on finding the right college with the best possible support systems for them. McKenna is excited to work with mentors who are just as passionate about postsecondary education and empowering students to reach their educational goals. 

Ashley Wilkins
Business Analyst/Administrator
NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon

Ashley Wilkins is the business analyst and administrator for the NELA Center for Student Success in Oregon. She has a strong background in nonprofit organizational development and project management. Prior to joining the Center, Wilkins managed the grantmaking process for a national education organization and supported college leaders across the country in developing college-based dropout recovery programs. Wilkins received a bachelor’s degree in community development with a minor in business from Portland State University.

As a native Oregonian and the first in her family to achieve a college credential, she is committed to doing her part to increase college access and serve traditionally underrepresented students in her community. Wilkins also volunteers as a facilitator for a children’s grief support group.