June 21, 2022

Pride Month Profile: Senior Enrollment Specialist, Alex Mastorakis

Alex Mastorakis Pride Month Profile in Diversity Header
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Get to Know Noodle's Senior Enrollment Specialist, Alex Mastorakis

A leader inspires others through action and also understands the importance of rest and reflection.

Alex Mastorakis is Noodle’s Senior Enrollment Specialist, Enrollment Team. Born and raised in Rocky Hill, Connecticut and currently living in Atlanta, Georgia, she received her education at the University of Connecticut receiving her Bachelors of Arts in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She also received her Masters of Education in College Student Affairs Administration from the University of Georgia. Alex recalls making education the focus of her life’s work through impacting students' lives by supporting their individual journeys and establishing environments that help facilitate their sense of belonging. Now here at Noodle, she supports the Enrollment Team through empowering others to embrace the best parts of themselves and maintaining a human-centered approach to her work.

What elements or traits does a great leader exhibit?

A great leader is someone who is a team player— first and foremost. Someone who understands the importance of having a diverse community and who is able to empower those around them to lean into their dynamic talents. A leader inspires others through action and also understands the importance of rest and reflection.

When you think of great leadership, who comes to mind? Why?

When I think of great leadership, I think of Dr. Laura Dean, who was the head of my graduate program. The pandemic began in my second semester of graduate school and I remember Dr. Dean always being a beacon of hope and support for myself and my classmates. She always began class with a reflection and gave us the space to share what we were going through so that we could process with our community. She also pushed us to continue learning and growing—even in the midst of the unknown. She made us believe that regardless of external circumstances, we were talented, intelligent and resilient students and professionals who could succeed regardless of what life threw at us.

How has your personal leadership style evolved?

When I began learning about and understanding leadership, it was a very individualized and linear approach. I understood leadership as positional and something to be attained. I now understand leadership to be an ever-evolving cycle that’s rooted in self awareness and community building. Anyone can be a leader if they truly take the time to understand themselves, their strengths and their areas of growth. It’s important to also know how that relates with the community around them.

What is it about your background or career experiences that successfully positioned you for your role at Noodle? Describe that role.

My background in higher education has mostly focused on student affairs and support, including student activities and involvement, orientation, new student programs, and event management. Additionally, my graduate school training allowed me to dive deeper into student support and advising, leadership development, assessment, and DEI work. My role at Noodle as a Senior Enrollment Specialist acts as strategic support for programs across Enrollment to ensure recruitment success. Given the breadth of my experiences, I am uniquely positioned to provide individualized support for students through the enrollment process, as well as providing strategic support to company-wide learning and development initiatives.

How do you support the success of your team?

I support the success of my team through humor, encouragement, and empowering others to embrace the best parts of themselves. I also always keep in mind that for the most part, we are all doing our best. This helps me to maintain a human-centered approach to the work that I do both with students as well as with my colleagues.

Describe how your career has been enhanced by exposure to diverse people, places or experiences.

It is difficult to try to succinctly describe the impact of diversity on my career. However, I feel like I can say without hesitation that I would not be where I am today had it not been for the diverse support system I have or the chances I took to experience new places that challenged my growth. Perhaps growth is precisely the succinct answer I’ll share. Being able to learn and grow alongside folks whose lives look completely different than my own has had an immeasurable impact. Undoubtedly these experiences have deepened my core values around the importance of community, inclusion, and belonging.

What are some of the most effective tools in your leadership arsenal?

I believe that my expansive imagination coupled with my strategic planning skills allow me to conceptualize innovative ideas and solutions. Allowing myself the freedom and creativity to brainstorm and question has led to some wonderful projects and meaningful partnerships, both at Noodle and beyond.

Please tell us something about yourself that people would be surprised to learn.

If I did not pursue a career in education, I definitely would have loved to pursue horticulture or botany. I am enamored with plants and their biology! I took several horticulture classes both in high school and college. My hope is that one day I can have a little greenhouse in my backyard and live out that dream!