Elena Maina


Student U Chief Program Officer

phone: 919-295-6114 email: elena.maina@studentudurham.org


Elena's primary responsibility is ensuring high-quality programming, developing the leaders who implement our programs, serving as a liaison at the intersection of our families and programming, and maintaining a strong staff culture in our organization.

Elena's Why:
I value the diversity and beauty of human experience.  No two human souls are the same, and we all have different needs and dreams for our lives.  I chose to work at Student U because this organization supports individual expression by deeply investing not only into each student’s academic life, but into their personal well-being and family life, too.  Student U views each student as the whole asset to their community that they really are.

Elena outside of Student U:
When I am not at Student U, I am usually playing indoor “monster tag” with my little ones Maria and Elián or hiking outside with my college sweetheart Andrew.

Advice Elena finds valuable:
Students, don’t be afraid to fail!  Because there is no one exactly like you, your existence is crucial and immensely valuable.  This value does not diminish because of a failure.



Other organizations Elena is involved with:
Teach for America Alumna (Phoenix 2010)

University of Florida and Arizona State University

Course of study:
Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics, Bachelor of Arts in English, and Master of Education in Secondary Education

Professional accomplishments:
5.5 years of experience in college advising and 2.5 years of experience in teaching

Student U start date:
January 7,  2019