Ciara Jones
Assistant Coach + Recruiting Coordinator

Howard University

Volleyball Coach


CIara Jones – CLASS OF 2017



How and where did your coaching career start?

I started my coaching career at high school alma mater Edgewater High School in 2014 and for college, I started at Clemson University in 2016 as the Director of Operations.

How did it feel to learn that you were an AVCA Diversity Award recipient?

I was extremely excited to receive the award because it paid for my way to the AVCA Convention where I got to meet my now boss and Head Coach Shaun Kupferberg at Howard University. I played at Marquette University and I knew of a lot of coaches and former players from a student-athlete standpoint. As far as my career, I knew my former college coaches at Marquette that was about the extent of my network. I needed the opportunity to expand my network/build relationship and all I needed was the opportunity to make it happen and I did.

How has the award impacted your career?

As I stated before, I got my first coaching job at Howard University from the opportunity to be at the convention. I met so many great people in my class and we learned a lot from the guest speakers as well as each other. I think one of the coolest things I was able to do was help one of my classmates Julian Welsh-White who was also looking
for a job at the time. We have been a great team at Howard and I’m excited to see his future in the game of volleyball. I think personally that is what it is all about – paying it forward and
understanding this career is about helping each other and receiving the award that is what it taught me.

What’s your favorite coaching memory?

I think my favorite coaching memory is going to the NCAA tournament for the first time as a coach. I went as a player in 2011 and returned as coach in 2017, and if you told me that back in 2011 I would not have believed you.

Do you have a fun fact to share about yourself?

I have a lot of random things that I can still do – like tumble. I used to do gymnastics when I was a little girl and a lot of the things I learned from ages 5-9 have not left me yet.


Sports Imports would also like to recognize the entire 2017 class of AVCA Diversity Awards Winners:
  • Noel Carpio, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, UW-Milwaukee,
  • Frank Craig, Head Women’s Volleyball Coach, Oral Roberts University
  • Sid Davidson, Head Boys’ Volleyball Coach, Long Beach Polytechnic High School, CA
  • Alejandro Gonzalez,  1st Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Hamline University, & 17-2s Co-Head Coach, Minnesota Select Volleyball Club
  • Carrie Gurnell, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, University of North Texas
  • Thanh Harnish, Head Coach, Munciana Volleyball Club
  • Victoria Hurrt, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Midwestern State University
  • Christian Staple, Assistant Men’s and Women’s Volleyball Coach, McKendree University
  • Julian Welsh-White, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Howard University

To learn more about the AVCA Diversity Awards, visit our blog here.