Dr. Stacey Nickson, Director

Stacey C. Nickson is in her fourth decade of service as an educator and administrator in both K-12 and higher education. As Director of Center for Educational Outreach and Engagement (CEOE) at Auburn University  Dr. Nickson oversees the development and implementation of K-12 grants, projects, programs and partnerships established by University Outreach. These programs impact districts, schools and students throughout the state of Alabama.

Dr. Nickson also created and administers the Auburn University Cultural Insight Program, which promotes global communication skill development using Culture Bump Approach®. As such, Dr. Nickson presents workshops and seminars locally, nationally and internationally training educational leaders from varied disciplines in cross-cultural communication.

Dr. Nickson earned a Fulbright award in 2012 and served as a Fulbright Specialist at the University of Cape Town’s Center for Higher Education Development in South Africa in 2013. Dr. Nickson currently serves as the president of the Alabama Fulbright Association.

Dr. Nickson's publications reflect her research interests and include book chapters and journal articles on preparing faculty in South Africa, cross-cultural communication across disciplines, diversity leadership and technology, and learning theories.

Dr. Nickson earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University-Bloomington and a doctorate from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

Click here to view Dr. Nickson's Outreach e-portfolio.

Venus Hewing
Dr. Venus Hewing, Outreach Partnerships and Initiatives Coordinator

Dr. Venus Hewing was born in Columbus Ohio and raised in many places across the country as a military dependent.  She has been in the field of Higher Education for over 25 years.

Dr. Hewing was recently appointed Coordinator for Outreach Partnerships and Initiatives in the Center for Educational Outreach & Engagement.  She worked in the Office of Inclusion and Diversity (OID) and Student Affairs before coming to University Outreach.  She served as a Psychological Counselor, Coordinator of Peer Educators and Emergency On-call Counselor at Ramapo College of New Jersey for 17 years, prior to coming to Auburn University.

Dr. Hewing received her undergraduate degree in Public Administration from Franklin University, Master’s degree in Counseling Education from University of Dayton and Doctorate degree in Higher Education Leadership from Union Institute & University.  Dr. Hewing is passionate about higher education and believes it to be the key to liberation that exposes one to unlimited possibilities.

Tanja Matthews
Tanja Redd, MBA, Coordinator

Tanja is a native of Frankfurt, Germany but has lived most of her life in either Georgia or Alabama. She earned her B.S. in international business from Auburn University in 1992, an MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management in 2004, and is currently pursuing her PhD in higher education administration at Auburn University.

Tanja brings diverse experience to the Center for Educational Outreach and Engagement (CEOE) office. In her over 8 years of service to Auburn University, she was an instructor in the Auburn First Year Experience program in 2010 and 2014/2015 and will be the instructor for a GEAR UP Tutoring class through the Honors College in 2015. She is a former alumni programs coordinator with the Auburn Alumni Association and has nearly a decade of programming and special events planning experience including coordinating the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Awards held annually to honor alumni and friends who have excelled in their career or field. She also planned and coordinated the 2011 Auburn University National Championship Pep Rally in Glendale, Arizona with over 50,000 students, VIPs, alumni, and fans present. In 2009, Tanja was chosen by her Auburn University peers as Employee of the Month in the Professional Staff category and was awarded the Spirit of Excellence Award.

Prior to returning the Plains to work for her alma mater, Tanja taught German at the Berlitz Language School in Atlanta, Georgia and held numerous substitute teaching assignments in the Gwinnett County school system, including a long term assignment teaching German IV. Her business experience includes positions with the Federal Reserve Bank in Birmingham, the former ValuJet Airlines and JP Morgan in New York and Atlanta.

Tanja Matthews
LaDonna Langley, Coordinator

LaDonna Langley joined the Center for Educational Outreach and Engagement (CEOE) team in 2016 to facilitate Auburn University’s collaboration with the GEAR UP Birmingham City Schools grant. LaDonna develops new thematic summer camps and facilitates Auburn University’s summer programming arm of GEAR UP Birmingham City Schools. These programs are designed to promote college exposure for GEAR UP students through participation in activities and curriculum to enhance subject knowledge and career readiness. LaDonna provides support to the Director of CEOE and assists with the oversight and management of Auburn University’s GEAR UP grant responsibilities.

In 2015 LaDonna received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a minor in Human Services from Troy University. She also possesses a certification in Surgical Technology. LaDonna plans to continue her education here at Auburn University. LaDonna has business experience working with Inflation Systems, Inc., a division of Takata Corporation and First National Bank of Opelika.

LaDonna has extensive volunteer experience which includes concentrations in fundraising and disaster awareness with the American Red Cross as well as philanthropic work for the Children’s Miracle Network. She is a proud member of the Fulbright Association which promotes and supports the Fulbright Program of international educational and cultural exchange.

Erica Crenshaw
Erica Crenshaw, Assistant Camp Director – Black Belt Legacy Camp

In June 2004, Erica started her non-profit career with the Black Belt Community Foundation (BBCF) in Selma, AL as the Officer Administrator. After several years and holding various positions within the organization, Erica was promoted to Program Officer. As the Program Officer, Erica’s goal was to connect the foundations work to the community and the community’s work to the foundation. Erica facilitated programs such as the Community Associates (CA) Program, Community and Arts Grants Program, the Black Belt 100 Lenses Program which was a collaboration with the BBCF and the University of Alabama’s Center for Community Based Partnership. Erica was also the first project coordinator of the 2013 Black Belt Legacy Camp, which was a collaboration with the BBCF and the Center for Educational Outreach and Engagement Department at Auburn University.

After nine and a half years with a wonderful organization, Erica decided to switch careers and focus on her passion in Human Resources. Erica is currently a Human Resources Specialist with the Henry County Board of Education in McDonough, GA.

Erica holds the Black Belt Community Foundation very near and dear to heart and continues to work closely with the foundation whenever the opportunity arises.

Shavonne Cater
Shavonne Cater, Graduate Assistant

Shavonne Cater serves a graduate assistant for the Center for Educational Outreach and Engagement (CEOE). In May of 2016 she earned her B.S. in Biomedical Sciences and B.A. in Public Administration from Auburn University and is currently in her second year of the Pharm.D. program at the Harrison School of Pharmacy. Her hometown is Decatur, Alabama.

Shavonne became a part of the CEOE team in August of 2017. Here she works to support the GEAR UP Alabama and GEAR UP Birmingham City Schools programs, as well as with K-12 Outreach, corresponding and sending promotional items to primary and secondary schools with interests in Auburn University.

Last Updated: March 5, 2019