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#PeopleofWKU: Cierra Waller

Cierra Waller, Student Services Coordinator for Potter College of Arts & Letters is the newest recipient of the University Staff Excellence Award for Student Advisement Non-Faculty. She began working as a full-time staff member at WKU in 2012 and joined Potter College in 2013. She works with students from the time they come in for their TOP (Topper Orientation Program) experience all the way through to graduation. She is known in her area as being a real problem solver, someone who is proactive, dedicated and willing to go the extra mile to be sure students are on track to meet their goals.

Cierra Waller

Working as a peer mentor advisor and teaching assistant during her time as a graduate student at WKU is what sparked Waller’s interest in the field of academic advising.

“I came to WKU as a graduate student, and I just fell in love with it,” Waller said. “I knew I wanted to get a job working with students and advising, and I kept trying until I did. That’s when I realized, this is what I want to do.”

Waller attributes much of her success in college to some of her own academic advisors.

“Through my undergraduate and graduate experience I would not have made it without some amazing advisors. Thankfully, I was blessed to have some really good and caring advisors that helped me along the way,” Waller said. “When I started my graduate program [at WKU], I was a new mom. My son was born at the end of June, and I started my grad program in August. My advisor at the time, Dr. Victoria Gordon was amazing. She was doing some research on maternity in the workplace. She told me about all the different options I had available, and made sure I was on track. When I started doing some peer mentor advising as a teaching assistant, I decided I wanted to be able to help guide students like someone helped me. To me, that’s the biggest part of being able to give back in your service and in your work, to be able to help others succeed. What other job would be more rewarding than helping students achieve their dreams and accomplish their goals? I very much wanted to be a part of that.”

Waller is currently assisting in the creation of a robust Potter College Academic Commons area where students can drop in for study hours, workshops and assistance. She hopes Potter College Academic Commons can grow in services to become a full student success center for the entire college.

Contact: Potter College, (270) 745-2344


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