Stetson University, a nationally ranked university founded in 1883, with four colleges and schools located across central Florida, is seeking a strategic and forward-thinking Senior Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing. This newly created position, reporting to President Christopher Roellke, will be responsible for fostering deep collaboration and providing oversight for the critical enterprises of undergraduate and graduate admission, financial aid, and marketing and communication at Stetson University. As a member of the President’s cabinet, the collegial and forward-thinking Senior Vice President will shape the vision for enrollment and enhance the overall reputation and brand identity of Stetson University. As a strategic partner with the senior team and Board of Trustees, the selected candidate will oversee the planning and implementation of enrollment initiatives designed to activate the substantial progress already made toward the University’s strategic goals
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
The essential duties and responsibilities for the Senior Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing are as follows:
- Create a collegial, team-building work environment; motivate and inspire a professional staff by demonstrating a strong work ethic and a commitment to professional development; facilitate an office culture that is inclusive and committed to Stetson’s values; and knit together the enrollment and marketing teams in their shared work through effective communication.
- Establish and enhance partnerships with Academic Affairs, Development, Campus Life and Student Success, Athletics, and more to define and support enrollment, marketing and communication strategies that lead to success.
- Possess a commitment to building an inclusive and equitable living, learning, and working environment; oversee initiatives to enhance diversity and a sense of belonging among the staff and student body.
- Collaborate with leadership to ensure the university's diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and successes are chronicled and shared through internal and external channels.
- Educate with knowledge and information regarding changing demographics and the highly competitive landscape, lead the campus community in understanding challenges and guide the campus community and community partners in building effective activities in response.
- Serve as an advocate for retention and persistence efforts; support the work of other campus partners in the retention of students, collection of data, sharing of information, and development of programs and enhancement of the student experience and outcomes.
- Support the University's strategic goals and provide a clear vision and tactical direction.
- Ensure the fiscally sound operation of the Division of Enrollment Management and Marketing.
- Since Stetson is a largely tuition driven institution, the new SVP will strategically deploy need and merit-based funding as a priority to attract an academically talented and diverse student body that includes undergraduate, graduate, transfer, and international students across multiple campuses.
- Lead the Office of Student Financial Planning in developing and executing merit and need-based aid leveraging strategies which reflect institutional enrollment goals, decrease discount rates, and increase revenue.
- Effectively utilize donor-supported scholarships and aid to increase stewardship and future fundraising.
- As a confident and experienced strategist, serve as educator-in-chief on campus enrollment issues.
- Possess the ability to utilize data and research, identify and open new markets, and employ sophisticated need and merit based leveraging strategies.
- Demonstrate enthusiasm for working in an environment where innovation, relationships, and fresh ideas are prized, along with collaboration and good humor.
- Develop and execute specific strategies and tactics, which support the unique enrollment challenges of Stetson’s academic complexity and diverse programs.
- Partner with the board, deans, faculty, and staff, to develop and implement annual and long-term recruitment and yield plans in order to achieve the University’s enrollment and retention goals.
- Lead the enrollment and marketing teams in evaluating, implementing, and leveraging technology to innovate, increase operational efficiency, and meet the expectations of students and families.
- Foster a culture of excellence in the utilization of data and the transparent sharing of information including best practices in data collection, analysis, and reporting; provide expert knowledge in the use and analysis of marketing and enrollment data.
Marketing and Communications
- Serve as the chief marketing and communications strategist for the University, responsible for overall internal and external communications, research-based messaging, and marketing and branding activity.
- Develop comprehensive marketing strategies which reach, influence, and compel prospective students and their families to consider a Stetson education.
- Collaborate with staff and faculty across Stetson's campuses to develop and execute the university's strategic communications program in support of the institution's mission, vision, values, and goals.
- Lead and assess brand cohesion and effectiveness to strengthen Stetson’s national reputation and attract the best students, staff, faculty, and donors.
- Possess a strong foundation in crisis communications management as well as social media communications management; experience with brand development, focus groups and quantitative research, good organizational skills, planning and execution.
- Provide vision and leadership for and demonstrate results of the University's integrated marketing, strategic communications, public relations, and special events activities.
- Lead collaboration with key leaders to support a cohesive brand identity and research-based strategies that define market position, target audiences and key messages to enhance the University's enrollment, market strength, national reputation, and distinctiveness.
- Guide the production of content tailored strategically to key audiences capitalizing on various media platforms and positioning Stetson as a university of choice for innovative approaches to tackling complex challenges.
- Strategically employ team development focusing on project management and communications with all Schools/Colleges to achieve recruitment and retention goals.
- During times of emergency or crisis, serve as or delegate the role of University spokesperson and advise the president and senior leadership team on appropriate communications actions and responses.
Qualifications, Skills, and Characteristics
It is strongly preferred that the successful candidate will have earned an advanced degree and it is required that they have a bachelor’s degree. Additionally, this role requires a minimum of ten years of experience in positions of progressively increasing responsibility in enrollment management, marketing or communications, higher education, or related fields. In addition, the selected candidate should illustrate the following qualifications, skills, and characteristics:
- Notable track record of success in recruitment and enrollment efforts.
- Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills, including the ability to be an empathetic listener and persuasive communicator.
- Passion for excellence and integrity, a tolerance for ambiguity during times of change, and a willingness to possess and promote the academic values of the university community.
- Engaging storyteller with the ability to articulate the value proposition, vision, mission, brand, and goals of Stetson across various media platforms.
- Possession of executive presence as well as active visibility within national or regional enrollment marketing and/or communications organizations.
- Ability to use data in conjunction with intuition to be a strategic risk-taker.
- Knowledgeable about relevant prospecting, admission, and yield strategies for a variety of diverging markets – instate, out of state, first year, transfer, and graduate populations.
- Experienced enrollment management professional with an understanding of the US domestic and international markets.
- Commitment to institutional strategy, enthusiasm for a positive future, and an energy to embrace a changing environment.
- Skills that will contribute to the continuing creation of a university wide path for marketing that outlines Stetson’s distinctive voice and outcomes.
- Creative, innovative, and collaborative campus and community partner with a relationship rich demeanor.
- Ability to recruit, hire, and retain talented staff, equipping them as a team, and empowering them to work together toward the accomplishment of strategic and practical goals of the university.
“With our collective efforts, we will make our form of extraordinary education accessible to really smart, really engaging young people. We will broaden and deepen Stetson’s personalized, experiential and intellectually vibrant education for our students coming to us from a wide range of social, ethnic, geographic and economic backgrounds.”
Stetson will embrace innovations in curriculum and continue to challenge students to be the best that they can be.
“We will stay laser-focused, and I mean laser-focused, on how students learn and how best to help them learn. We will pursue all of this with kindness, with empathy and through shared ownership of our university.”
President Christopher Roellke
2021 Inauguration address
Founded in 1883 and now stretching across Florida at 3,900 students strong, Stetson University is developing a new strategic vision that combines traditional strengths with cutting-edge strategies for success. Stetson is composed of the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, the School of Music, and the College of Law. Additionally, the University has a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa and is a member of NCAA Division I athletics. The 2,500 undergraduates represent 45 states and 47 countries. Recent capital improvements include the $18 million Cici and Hyatt Brown Hall for Health and Innovation, and a multi-million dollar renovation of the Sage Hall Science Center. Coming up is the reopening of our beloved Chaudoin Hall for Women after upgrades to rooms, HVAC and electrical, the reopening of our baseball stadium and a renovation of the Edmunds Center, our basketball arena and home to Athletics.
Stetson University provides an inspiring education that engages students with challenging and creative study and fosters values of personal and social responsibility. With a core commitment to a liberal arts education in the context of an array of arts and sciences and professional programs, our students cultivate their abilities to explore issues, think critically, reason empirically, express persuasively, and connect ideas creatively across their studies and life experiences. Our vibrant community of teacher-scholars nurtures the unique potential of individual students to prepare them to rise to the challenges of shaping the future, locally, nationally, and globally.
Stetson is a top-ranked, comprehensive university known for academic rigor and active citizenship. As Florida’s first private university, students enroll at its three locations: a historic campus in DeLand, between Daytona Beach and Orlando; its College of Law campus in Gulfport near St. Petersburg; and in downtown Tampa.
At its core, Stetson is a community with a deep commitment to learning and values. Faculty, staff, and alumni create an environment that nurtures students’ intellect, opens them to new possibilities, and gives them the space and resources to develop holistically as free thinkers, leaders, and innovators. Toward this end, and as a dynamic and diverse reflection of its communities, Stetson champions the respectful, constructive exchange of ideas and viewpoints. It places high value on preserving, building, and restoring the connections that celebrate individuality and uplift us all.
The University’s steadfast commitment to teaching and learning means that it has maintained its 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio even as it has increased undergraduate enrollment 20.5 percent since 2010, in a period of dynamic institutional growth.
Beyond the classroom, world-readying initiatives engage Stetson students in immersive research and creative performances, in internships where they hone their skills and networks, in leadership roles, study abroad and in partnership projects that improve communities. This mix of high-impact, experiential learning develops in students the competencies that future employers and society require.
Stetson offers students hundreds of opportunities to get involved, hone their leadership skills, and follow their passions. Students form a vibrant Hatter community where learning extends beyond the classroom and into co-curricular activities that include intramural and club sports, academic fraternities, interest- or demographic-specific clubs and groups, Greek life, student government, media, international learning and more. It’s no surprise, given its location, but its Surf Club is one of the largest club sports on campus, and open to novice and experienced surfers.
With an emphasis on maintaining a safe and respectful community, the University fosters active student engagement that improves students’ academic performance and satisfaction with their Stetson experience. The university offers a Cultural Credit program encouraging student engagement in a wide array of organizations, lectures, competitions and wellness events and programs. They become involved in everything from alternative spring break travel, to Moot Court and the Student Bar Association and numerous other activities.
Stetson’s Athletics program competes at the highest level of collegiate sports with 467 participating scholar-athletes. Offering 17 NCAA Division I athletics, Stetson is a member of the Pioneer Football League and the Metro Atlantic Conference (rowing) as well as the ASUN Conference for all other sports. Stetson’s mascot is “John B.,” named after the university’s benefactor, John B. Stetson. The university’s colors are green and white, and its athletics teams are called “Hatters.” Stetson Athletics focuses on HATS, Helping A Teammate Succeed, and the Hatter Purpose, “Create and provide the experience of a lifetime through teamwork and relationships to achieve excellence.”
In 2021-22, a total of 208 Stetson student-athletes made the ASUN Honor Roll. Additionally, the NCAA’s multi-year Academic Progress Rate database for all Division I athletics teams nationwide for 2020-21 showed that nearly all of Stetson’s NCAA Division I sports performed well above the minimum threshold.
Community involvement is an integral part of the Stetson experience, as 71% of Stetson undergraduates work to affect change through meaningful service (compared to a national average of 54%, NASCE 2018). The university is locally, regionally, and nationally recognized for its partnerships and engagement with its communities.
Multiple academic partnerships exist with area schools, hospitals, businesses, and other organizations. Stetson also hosts a poverty and homelessness conference for leaders and educators; addresses water and other environmental concerns; advocates for veterans; offers a community school of music; and assists lower-income residents with their tax returns. For nearly 20 years, the Bonner Program has been one of Stetson’s strongest catalysts for student-led community transformation and social justice. Bonner students work with community partners to address complex challenges such as poverty and homelessness through service internships.
Stetson is a vibrant intellectual community where learning and values meet to educate the whole person. In bringing together learning and values, the University encourages all its members to cultivate academic inquiry, demonstrate personal integrity, commit to active forms of social responsibility, develop an appreciation for the spiritual dimension of life, and embrace leadership in an increasingly complex world. The University emphasizes an education grounded in liberal learning with practical experiences infused in its programs, culture, and community. In fact, because of our academic merit and scholarly distinction in the liberal arts and sciences, Stetson was the first private university in the state of Florida to be awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. Stetson’s liberal education fosters in students critical and creative thinking, problem solving, and the ability to see the world from multiple perspectives. It creates an inclusive environment that stimulates open, honest discourse. Based on essential learning outcomes for a 21st century college education (outlined in the AAC&U’s Liberal Education and America’s Promise initiative), Stetson’s curriculum delivers broad knowledge of human culture and the natural and physical world as well as in-depth inquiry into a major field of study. Every undergraduate student completes a capstone experience (an original research project, recital, artistic work or portfolio).
Faculty, who are true teacher-scholar citizens, challenge and support, question and empower, involve and motivate their students. They emphasize linking and synthesizing ways of knowing and doing, and importantly, focus on transferable intellectual and practical skills —such as communicating effectively, working cooperatively, and behaving ethically and responsibly— that prepare graduates for meaningful lives and work. The university attracts bright, highly motivated students who are passionate about engaging with and improving their communities. They are inquisitive, thoughtful, intellectual, and creative.
College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences is devoted to 21st century liberal learning and committed to excellence in its main undergraduate divisions — the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, and education— and in its graduate programs. College faculty members come from premier graduate programs and are distinguished in their respective fields as active researchers and scholars. A college distinction is the required senior project in every major; students undertake endeavors appropriate to their field of study, and many present finished products at regional and/or national conferences or venues. A growing number of students in the sciences have received nationally competitive NSF-sponsored Research Experience for Undergraduates summer fellowships. At the heart of the college’s general education curriculum lies a radically integrated writing core; and, through an extraordinary range of experiential learning opportunities, students make practical connections between the classroom and local, regional, and global communities.
School of Business Administration
Stetson’s School of Business Administration offers innovative and personal learning experiences that use the latest techniques and technologies to keep pace with the ever-changing business landscape. AACSB-accredited in business and accounting at undergraduate and graduate levels, the school has recently expanded its international offerings and highlights the development of student professional competencies. All student majors must complete two Experiential Learning Requirements (ELRs), such as an internship, study abroad or campus leadership experience. Stetson faculty embrace the teacher-scholar model, equally emphasizing sound pedagogy and discipline-specific research. Building on an innovative business core of interdisciplinary courses, signature programs exist in entrepreneurship (Joseph C. Prince Entrepreneurship Program), professional sales (Centurion Sales Program), investments (Roland George Investments Program) and accounting (M.E. Rinker Sr. Institute of Tax and Accountancy, ranked (2020-2021) in the top 5% internationally based on CPA pass rates.
School of Music
Florida’s first music school, the Stetson University School of Music is recognized throughout the state for its graduates’ influence on K-12 education and nationally for its music academic preparation, performance degree outcomes, and choral and instrumental ensemble performances. In a distinctly undergraduate-only program, students benefit from individual training and daily engagement with diverse and artistically active faculty. With a strong instrumental program and nationally renowned vocal program — as well as a special emphasis placed on touring and recruiting — the School of Music has experienced dynamic growth in recent years. The robust music curricula paired with an essential foundation of liberal learning studies that emphasizes effective writing, speaking and critical thinking serves as a launching point of great careers for many typical — but also some surprising — areas of the profession for our graduates.
College of Law
Founded in 1900 as Florida’s first law school, Stetson University College of Law moved to Gulfport, on the west coast of Florida in 1954. Stetson Law enjoys national preeminence in trial advocacy and legal writing, with a highly successful trial team, moot court and dispute resolution programs. Stetson Law leads the nation in blending legal doctrine with practical training and provides hundreds of externship opportunities. It is internationally recognized for leadership in biodiversity law, elder law, higher education law and policy, international law, legal communication, social justice advocacy and veterans’ advocacy.
Students receive careful mentoring from exceptional professional faculty who are authors, lawyers and leaders in their fields as well as involved in influential leadership organizations such as the American Bar Association. Law students’ ratings of student advising (academic and career) at Stetson are significantly higher than Stetson’s peer and aspirant schools (LSSSE 2017). Stetson graduates include prominent attorneys, judges, CEOs and advocates for positive change, whose contributions to the practice of law have improved the human condition.
Stetson embraces its ability as an institution of higher learning to harness wisdom, spur progress and set an example. Linking its campuses is a shared commitment to social justice, environmental sustainability and other forms of social responsibility that inspires students to address complex challenges with imagination, heart, analysis and resolve. The University is often recognized for civic engagement, service-learning and its community partnerships. Representing a new generation of leaders, students devoted more than 130,000 hours of service to their communities last year through pro bono work, the Bonner Program and Stetson’s Center for Community Engagement as well as other projects. Financial investments in abiding and emerging endeavors have breathed new life into the University and support strategies that help Stetson position itself to remain competitive, relevant, and distinctive in an ever-changing landscape.
Since 2010, Stetson’s endowment has almost tripled and is at nearly $300 million. Its Beyond Success – Significance comprehensive campaign concluded in 2019, well surpassing its goal of $200 million. This past year Stetson set a new record, raising more than $50 million in a single year. Institutional and donor support have provided resources that support technology, faculty learning, and an array of curricular and co-curricular programs in a vibrant campus environment where students flourish. Students benefit from the cascading effects of the Stetson experience – one that transforms them into global, socially responsible citizens who go beyond their personal success to achieve a life of significance.
Rankings and Accreditations
Stetson ranks No. 4 among the 2022-23 Best Regional Universities (South) by U.S. News & World Report. It is also recognized on U.S. News regional lists for Best Value, Best Undergraduate Teaching, and Best Social Mobility and the College of Law ranks No. 3 in both Trial Advocacy and Legal Writing. Stetson is also among the Princeton Review’s 2022-23 Top 388 Colleges.
Degrees and Governance
Stetson University is an independent, private university governed by a self-perpetuating Board of Trustees. As a collective body, the trustees hold the authority and responsibility to ensure the fulfillment of the institution’s mission, are ultimately responsible for the university’s fiscal health, and select and appoint the president. Each college or school has a board of advisers. Stetson is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Business Administration; bachelor’s degrees in the School of Music; and Juris Doctor, Master of Jurisprudence and Master of Laws degrees in the College of Law.
Mission and Values
The mission at Stetson University is to provide an excellent education in a creative community where learning and values meet, and to foster in students the qualities of mind and heart that will prepare them to reach their full potential as informed citizens of local communities and the world.
Stetson values the development of the whole person committed to engaging and building lifelong connections with the larger world through Personal Growth, Intellectual Development and Global Citizenship. To that end, the University fosters policies, practices, and modes of inquiry to support and explore these values areas.
COVID did not stop Stetson. Stetson University raised a record $52.2 million last fiscal year, providing money for scholarships, academic programs, and facility improvements.
The Cici & Hyatt Brown Hall for Health & Innovation will open in November 2022, renovations of Sage Hall Science Center were completed in summer 2021, and renovation has begun at the College of Law campus in Gulfport on the Advocacy Institute.
The Ukrainian fund brought four Ukrainian students and a faculty member displaced by the war in their country to Stetson this fall. It provides room and board, travel expenses and funds for basic necessities and school supplies, to allow students to continue their studies in the United States.
Facilities Improvements in Recent Years
MARSHALL AND VERA LEA RINKER WELCOME CENTER
Starting in 2016, a number of new or improved facilities opened their doors to the community and guests, including the three-story, brick-and-glass, $7 million Marshall and Vera Lea Rinker Welcome Center. The center houses Admissions and Enrollment Management, Marketing and Communication, as well as a one-stop service area for students, including the Registrar, Bursar, Financial Planning, and Career and Professional Development.
VETERANS LAW INSTITUTE AND VETERANS ADVOCACY CLINIC
In October 2018, the College of Law cut the ribbon on its newest renovation, the Veterans Law Institute. The facility houses the Veterans Advocacy Clinic, which provides free legal assistance.
CARLTON UNION BUILDING (CUB) RENOVATION AND EXPANSION
One of the largest projects on campus, the $32 million renovation and expansion of the Carlton Union Building was completed in January 2019. The project nearly doubled the size of the facility to more than 84,000 square feet. The CUB highlights Stetson’s commitment to environmental sustainability from its design and construction to ongoing functional practices including solar panels. As part of the renovation, the student Revolving Green Fund and Environmental Fellows installed 231 solar panels on the roof to generate energy and offset the facility’s carbon footprint.
SANDRA STETSON AQUATIC CENTER
In February 2019, the University opened the Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center. The $7 million, two-story facility on nearby Lake Beresford is home to Stetson’s men’s and women’s rowing teams, the Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience, and research facilities for the Environmental Science and Studies Department.
Stetson’s historic campus is in DeLand, Florida, which has received numerous awards for its eclectic and exciting downtown, including being named one of the best small towns in America by CNN and the Best Small Downtown in Central Florida. DeLand is a charming community of 30,000 within a metropolitan area of nearly 500,000. The county seat for Volusia County, DeLand is known for its "Old Florida" beauty, outstanding access to Atlantic Ocean beaches, fishing on the St. Johns River, and other outdoor recreational activities. There are plentiful shops, restaurants, festivals, and live music, all within easy walking distance of the campus and featured year-round. Stetson is 30 minutes from Daytona Beach, New Smyrna Beach, and the Canaveral National Seashore. The campus is an hour north of Orlando and the attractions of Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld. The Space Coast, home to Port Canaveral and Kennedy Space Center, are just an hour away from Stetson. The Central Florida area also has some of the most beautiful natural attractions, including freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, and unique natural springs. Just over two hours west are the Gulf Coast areas of Tampa and St. Petersburg which is home to the Stetson University College of Law.
Stetson University is partnering with Napier Executive Search to identify the best professional to fill the position of Senior Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing. To arrange for a confidential conversation or to nominate someone for this position, please contact Mary Napier or Laura Robinson. To apply, send 1) a resume, 2) a detailed letter of interest regarding your interest in Stetson, and 3) contact information for three professional references by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Resumes will be reviewed until the position is filled. All applications and nominations will be considered confidential, and notice will be given before references are contacted. Anticipated start date is spring 2023; the selected candidate will be based on the DeLand campus.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are among the core values of Stetson University. Consonant with these espoused values, the University is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination. Stetson prohibits discrimination in its employment practices and its educational programs and activities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, and pregnancy), national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, military status, citizenship status, or any other basis prohibited by applicable federal, state, or local laws.