About Us Breadcrumb People Breadcrumb Professional Staff


All of the staff and interns are here to provide support for student organizations and students affiliiated with the Cross-Cultural Center and any other organization that wants to advance the mission of the Cross-Cultural Center.

Do not hesistate to contact any of the staff or come by the Top Floor of the Cross-Cultural Center. You can find all the contact information on this page. We look forward to seeing you!

You can find the contact information of the People below:

Professional Staff


Jade Agua
jagua [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.2001

Originally from East Side San Jose,  Jade is a 4th generation Filipino Chinese American who’s family immigrated to the United States through Hawai’i.  Jade joined the CCC staff as Director in December 2015.  In this role, she is responsible for the overall management, direction, and long-term development of the Cross.  She will be working on developing departmental goals and objectives, strategic planning, and assessment.  Prior to coming to UCI, Jade served as the Program Director of the Office for Multicultural Learning at Santa Clara University (SCU), where she oversaw the Multicultural Center and Rainbow Resource Center.  At SCU, Jade was also able to implement learning outcomes based on multicultural competencies, revive the Difficult Dialogue series, and develop new diversity trainings for the campus community.  Before SCU, Jade worked at the University of Southern California (University of Southern California) as a Program Coordinator and Graduate Advisor in the School of Cinematic Arts, and as Assistant Director for Asian Pacific American Student Services.  She also brings with her community-based, nonprofit experience where she began her career at Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, Inc. (LEAP).  Jade earned her B.A. In Sociology and Master's in Public Administration at USC.  She is committed to empowerment through education, holistic human development, and social justice.  She lives in Long Beach with her husband and daughter, Sierra.


Jade Turner
Associate Director
jmturner [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.2002

Jade is a UCI alum who graduated with her BA in Criminology, Law and Society and received her Master of Science in Counseling, Student Development in Higher Education from California State University, Long Beach. Jade has worked in admissions and outreach, academic and career advising, counseling, orientation, student life, as well as in community-based non-profits. As a student at UCI, she worked with the Center for Educational Partnerships, Criminology Outreach Program, and the Legal Aid Society of Orange County.  After graduating, Jade helped the City of Los Angeles secure grant funding to serve foster youth and ex-offenders. At CSULB Jade worked with University Outreach and School Relations, Student Life and Development, Student Transition and Retention Services, Student Orientation, Advising and Registration, and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Committee. In addition, she has worked at Loyola Marymount University’s Ethnic and Intercultural Services and Cerritos College counseling, advising, and teaching diverse students. Jade has a personal commitment to diversity, challenging power structures in pursuit of social justice, and improving campus climate for all social groups in higher education. In her previous role as the CCC Student Development Coordinator, Jade focused on cultural wellness and personal development educating student leaders and social justice advocates on holistic wellness and the importance of politicizing self-care and wellbeing in their activism. 


Tamara Austin
Director of Women & Gender Education Initiatives
tcaustin [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.8861

Tamara is an east coast transplant to the Golden State.  She has been with the office of Student Affairs since 2011, serving various role that support students.  Her previous role was that of Associate Director for the Student Outreach and Retention Center. She now directs Women and Gender Education Initiatives through Student Life and Leadership and the Cross-Cultural Center. The Initiative serves to offer programming that addresses gender issues of interest to all students. The office engages faculty and staff from UCI and  surrounding communities to discuss current ideas and thinking about gender issues. The office produces programming that is inclusive of but not limited to: speakers, movie screenings and workshops. Tamara recognizes the desire of all students to be the best that they can be and works with them to engage in open dialogue that can assist them during their time here at UCI. Tamara completed her undergraduate studies at Temple University and continued on to her Master's in Social Work from the University of Pennsylvania. She previously served as Director of Counseling Services for the Penn State University School of Law.   


Daniel K. Park
Assistant Director
danielkp [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.4782

Daniel joined the Student Life & Leadership cluster as Assistant Director of the Cross-Cultural Center in July 2016. He is responsible for working with the Associate Director in administering the affiliation process for Registered Campus Organizations (RCOs) and serves as the primary advisor to the 40-50 affiliated RCOs in supporting their large-scale programming efforts (i.e., culture nights, cultural graduation celebrations). He also coordinates annual programs for the campus such as the Community Roots Festival, Martin Luther King, Jr. Symposium, and Deconstruction Series and teaches an identity development leadership seminar. Daniel also oversees all marketing (print and digital) and social media outlets for the Cross-Cultural Center and supervises interns and volunteers.

Prior to joining the Cross-Cultural Center, he spent five and a half years in the School of Social Ecology at UCI as Founding Director of the ACCESS Social Ecology Program and Academic Counselor. Since 2007, Daniel has worked professionally in functional areas within student affairs such as residential life, first-year student experience, student conduct, academic advising, and student retention and persistence at public and private research-intensive universities. 

Daniel earned his bachelor's degree in psychology and social behavior from UCI and master's degree in postsecondary administration and student affairs from the University of Southern California. He grew up in Downey, CA and now resides in East Irvine with his Corgi-mix rescue. He is especially passionate about facilitating student engagement, promoting student success inside and outside the classroom, and mentoring students, particularly those who have an interest in pursuing a career in student affairs.

Nadeeka Karunaratne

Nadeeka Karunaratne
Student Development Coordinator
nadeeka.k [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.0585

Nadeeka joined the Cross-Cultural Center family in October 2016 as the Student Development Coordinator. She is responsible for the REAL Talk program, academic and career development initiatives, cultural wellness programming, faculty-in-service opportunities, and social justice education. In her previous role as UCI’s Violence Prevention Coordinator in the CARE office, Nadeeka implemented violence prevention education and programs, developed culturally specific practices, and advised and supervised peer educators and student interns. Originally from the Bay Area, Nadeeka earned her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley. As a student at Cal, Nadeeka was involved with the Gender Equity Resource Center, worked for the Cal Student Orientation program, and conducted undergraduate research in toxicology. She received her Master of Arts in Student Affairs Administration from Michigan State University. At MSU she worked as the Undergraduate Research Office Graduate Assistant, volunteered for the Sexual Assault Crisis Intervention Team, and served as the instructor for an undergraduate leadership course. Nadeeka holds a strong social justice-centered student affairs philosophy and believes in facilitating spaces that support students’ learning and understanding of their identities, privilege, and oppression, and supporting them as they navigate complex institutions of higher education to become socially conscious change agents.

kathy dong

Kathy Dong
Administrative Specialist
kdong [at] uci [dot] edu; 949.824.0644

Kathy Dong is the Administrative Specialist for the Cross-Cultural Center. She joined Student Life & Leadership family in July 2015 as the Interim Programs Assistant for New Student & Leadership Programs and later the CCC Programs Assistant. Her current role in the Cross-Cultural Center is to manage events, organize room reservations, advise students, assist with programming logistics, outreach and market events to our campus, build relations between campus partners, and support the CCC staff in all capacities. Kathy graduated from UC Irvine as a Political Science and Sociology major in June 2015. As a student, she was involved with the Early Academic Outreach Program, Circle K International, Peer Academic Advising Program, School of Social Sciences, Administrative Intern Program, Sociology Honors Program, and the UCI XIV Dalai Lama Scholarship. Kathy is proud to join CCC family because she believes in their dedication to student development. She hopes to encourage and mentor students to find their “spark” so they can more easily navigate through the challenges at the university. During her free time, Kathy loves to spend quality time with her family and friends, engage in arts and crafts, watch TV shows like Scandal and Once Upon a Time, and listen to music.