Marc Smithers Elevated to Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students

November 1, 2021

Effective January 1, 2022, Marc Smithers will be elevated to the position of Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students.

This transition follows increasing responsibilities in recent years, including leadership of the College’s response to COVID-19 which saw Houghton students return to in-person instruction in the fall of 2019, where no positive cases were reported throughout the semester. As chair of the Diversity Committee, Marc helped to create the Mosaic Multicultural Center, implemented a campus bias response procedure, and co-led the Students of Color Leadership Summit with other area colleges. In addition, the Office of Student Life has extended New Student Orientation to meet student needs as they adapt to college life during a pandemic, and increased student representation in the governance of the College through transforming the Student Council. This has already seen increased student participation and amplified student voices in campus committees, organizations and programming. Smithers’ department, in coordination with the Center for Student Success, also recently implemented a wrap-around student support system, Compass, which coordinates student-care across campus to improve student learning, retention and persistence. In his work in student development, Smithers strives to increase student access, support, and achievement, particularly for historically underserved populations.

Smithers assumed the role of Dean of Students in 2018 with extensive experience in student development, having previously served at Houghton as a resident assistant, resident director, the Director of Residence Life and Housing, and then as the Assistant Dean of Residence Life and Programming. He earned a master’s degree in higher education from Geneva College and will complete his doctoral degree in organizational leadership with a concentration in higher education administration from Abilene Christian University in May 2022.

Marc and his wife, Ailie, reside in Houghton with their two children.