"Sarah not only brings significant experience and impressive credentials to the position, but she also clearly understands our mission and is passionate about working with students," said Mark H. Erickson, Wittenberg president. "We are very excited that she accepted our offer to join the Wittenberg family."
A self-described "conduit" for collaborative administration, Kelly has consistently demonstrated the ability to align programs and services to directly and actively support the learning environment throughout her 20 years in higher education. During her decade-long student development career at Xavier, Kelly helped to transform the career services operation by successfully bridging gaps between student affairs and other areas, including academic affairs, enrollment management, alumni and development, and marketing and public relations. Her boundary-spanning approach to management and leadership resulted in a career services program that more effectively responds to students' needs.
Kelly also increased diversity of divisional student affairs staff by 300 percent and collaborated with the vice provost of diversity to create the Intercultural Programming Funding Board. The board supports programming and learning opportunities to facilitate student interaction across group identities and advance awareness issues related to social justice and other multicultural themes.
In addition, Kelly helped to lead the division in crisis planning and prevention; authored a successful Student Support Services (TRIO) grant, which secured more than $800,000 in federal funds to help 160 low-income, first-generation students succeed at Xavier; promoted the collaboration of student affairs offices with enrollment and retention offices; and led the division in a comprehensive program review as part of the strategic planning process.
Most recently, Kelly partnered with Student Voice, a higher education/student affairs data mining company, to develop and market, The TּRּAּIּL® or Transcript Reflecting Activities, Involvement and Leadership, an electronic, co-curricular transcript Kelly created based on her belief that student involvement and engagement should be reflected in a formal, institutionally supported document.
"I draw my greatest satisfaction from my time spent with students," Kelly said. "I am amazed to witness what they become at the end of their time with us – mature men and women poised to take their places in the moral, civic and economic enterprises of our global community. As Wittenberg's vice president for student life and dean of students, I look forward to creating the spaces, literally and metaphorically, for students to tell their stories, and to understanding their individual and collective narratives in order to effectively advocate for them."
Kelly, who has frequently presented on such topics as managing diversity in student affairs, the role of institutional mission in higher education, internal marketing and branding, and student affairs assessment, earned her B.A. in philosophy and English literature, and her M.A. in secondary English education from Miami University. She then went on to earn her Ph.D. in higher education administration from Ohio University. She and her husband, Jim, a professor of philosophy at Miami University, have a 14-year-old daughter named Nora.
Written By: Karen Gerboth
Send a Message
• Book-Delivering Prof Named Ohio Professor of the Year
• Senior Class Selects Livestrong President & CEO Doug Ulman As 2011 Commencement Speaker
•Communication Program Honored Nationally With Top Award
• Wittenberg University Art Students Finalists For Scholarship Award