Leading Westminster’s Office of Enrollment: Dr. Calvin Smith (A Power in Purpose Profile)

Wondering about Westminster’s efforts to recruit students and increase enrollment? Ask President Akande’s newly appointed Interim Vice President and Dean of Enrollment, Dr. Calvin Smith.

In his current position, Dr. Smith leads the freshmen, transfer, and international student admissions and financial planning efforts. He also serves on the Deans’ Committee and President’s Cabinet, providing leadership for Westminster’s strategic initiatives.

Busy leading the Enrollment team to recruit new students, Dr. Smith recently had the pleasure of meeting a number of our alumni at Westminster Night at Busch Stadium June 15 and the Tulsa Drillers game gathering in Oklahoma June 22.

Cliched as it might sound, no two days are alike for Dr. Smith.

“A day might involve leadership meetings with the President’s Cabinet to discuss corporate partnership opportunities, to a conference call with vendors of recruitment products, or discussing educational opportunities with a student visiting campus,” says Dr. Smith. “There are a myriad of responsibilities and challenges with the goal of growing the institution and assembling and retaining the best possible incoming class.”

Dr. Smith first came to Westminster in August 2016 as the Associate Vice President for International Admissions.

“I traveled to South America, Asia, Africa, and Europe for College promotion and recruitment of international students,” he says about his first few months with Westminster. “I really look forward to seeing those students on campus in the fall.”

What should students look for in a college?

“A student should be looking for the right fit,” says Dr. Smith about helping students to choose a college. “There are many aspects to consider, and the student should ask as many questions of their admissions counselor as possible. It’s no time for surprises.”

Here are a few questions that Dr. Smith recommends students consider:

  • Do you want a rural, suburban, or urban campus?
  • What area of the country do you prefer? In what class size will you be most successful?
  • What major have you chosen, and does the school offer a strong program in that?
  • Do you plan to live on campus and what facilities does the college offer?
  • What are the sports and club options?
  • What scholarships are available?

Dr. Smith recently earned his Doctor of Management degree from Webster University where he worked for 18 years as Director of International Recruitment and Services. The title of his dissertation is Faking It: An Investigation of the Relationships between Online Dating, Interview Deception, Impression Management and Self-Monitoring.

“As someone who considers himself a lifelong learner, the doctorate represents the pinnacle of my personal academic goals,” Dr. Smith says. “The completion of the Doctor of Management degree definitely gives me a feeling of self-actualization. I utilize the concepts and practices taught during the program every day at Westminster, and in other areas of my life as well. It was a very rigorous program, but definitely worth the challenge.”

In his free time, Dr. Smith, a faithful St. Louis Cardinals fan, attends games or enjoys his hobby of collecting and doing basic maintenance on watches, particularly Swiss automatics. He loves to travel and has visited 75 countries for business and pleasure. He also is an avid follower of Formula 1 racing and has attended various grands prix in the United States and Asia.  When the weather permits, he likes to take his Vespa out on the road.

His wife Dorothy from Bogota, Colombia, is his vacation travel partner, and she recently completed her MBA at Webster University.  The couple was studying full time simultaneously, which Smith describes as “quite a challenge, but well worth the effort.”


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