Trevecca alumna to serve as new dean of students

Trevecca Nazarene University will welcome home one of its own to lead the newly restructured Office of Student Development.

Jessica Dykes, who holds two Trevecca degrees, has been named the new associate vice president and dean of student development. After earning a bachelor’s degree from Trevecca in 2007, Dykes completed a master’s in organizational leadership in 2013. She is currently pursuing a doctorate in higher education administration from The University of Alabama.

“I am so excited to return to the Hill as the new associate vice president and dean of student development,” Dykes said. “Trevecca is a special place, and I am inspired by the work God is doing on campus. I look forward to developing and supporting students as they persist to graduation, serving alongside talented professionals and working in the Trevecca community again.”

Dykes’ responsibilities will include oversight for resident life, community life, student academic success, counseling services, career development, commuter students, disability services, internships, the student work program, spiritual life, and student activities. Her tenure will begin on August 1.

Administration officials are excited to welcome Dykes back to the University.

“Replacing a 40-year veteran like Dr. Steve Harris is a huge task,” said Dr. Dan Boone, Trevecca’s president. “I am pleased to welcome home one of our own leaders whose work experience over the past 11 years has prepared her for the work ahead. Jessica Dykes loves Trevecca and has taken every opportunity to sharpen her skills for a life of service to our students.”

Dr. Tom Middendorf, associate provost and dean of academic affairs, agreed.

“It’s always a good day when we get to welcome an alumnus back home to the Hill,” he said. “Jessica’s life was impacted and forever changed by the mission of our university.  It was here that she developed a sense of calling to the field of student development and felt God’s prompting to invest in young people. This is not a job, but a ministry.”

Dykes comes to the University from Belmont University, where she has most recently served as the director of student organizations and activities. She previously served as the assistant director of student engagement and leadership development at Belmont as well as the assistant director of student life and leadership at the University of Texas at Tyler.

In addition, Dykes served as the residence hall director of Trevecca’s Johnson Hall from 2009-2014. She fills the vacancy left by Dr. Steve Harris, who retired as dean of students on June 30.

In the newly created role, Dykes will lead a team that consolidates all of the University’s academic and student services into one campus unit. The realignment will bring together the Office of Student Development, the Center for Leadership, Calling and Service, and the Office of the Chaplain. It’s a move Dr. Steve Pusey, University provost, says will streamline the work of these departments.

“Our goal has been to develop a collaborative organizational structure and services that focuses on the holistic development of our students—one which would consolidate all of our academic and student services, those in and outside the classroom, to meet the varying needs of a wide range of students,” Pusey said. “Through such a structure, we envision a new area of student development that provides more effective services and increased opportunities for student success.”

Middendorf, associate provost and dean of academic affairs, will also take on an expanded role in light of the restructure. Since returning to his alma mater in 2008, Middendorf has been instrumental in overseeing the work of the Center for Calling, Leadership and Service, including launching Trevecca’s program for first-year students, now known as LINK.

Middendorf will continue to provide oversight and direction to Dykes and her team, while also maintaining his duties as the University’s chief academic officer with the revised title of associate provost and dean of academic and student affairs.

These changes will be implemented immediately in preparation for the Fall 2018 semester, which begins on August 28.


Media contact: Mandy Crow, mmcrow@trevecca.edu, 615-248-1695