A new academic year brings different people to Taylor, both in the dorms and throughout the rest of campus. Along with the second-biggest freshman class in Taylor’s history, some fresh faces can be found teaching, cleaning, planning and working behind the scenes.
Taylor University has added some new positions to their staff this year, sprinkling new faces throughout many different departments, including athletics.
In athletics, Jessica Brown was named the new head coach for the TU softball program in July. She will lead the Trojans into the 2022-2023 year.
One role Taylor created this year is the Assistant Director for Residence Life Programs, which is currently being filled by Lindsey Rupp.
“My responsibilities include supervising five GAs within Residence Life who live in ‘res’ halls,” Rupp said. “And then I also oversee discipleship within residence halls.”
Rupp came to Taylor after working as the Residence Director at Cornerstone University for five years.
This role is new to Rupp and to the university, so she is learning the role as it develops; regardless of how much adjustment this position takes, she still cares deeply for students within Residence Life.
“That’s why we’re in higher ed., because of students, and they’re what keeps us here, like, I wouldn’t care to do this job if we didn’t have the types of students that Taylor does,” Rupp said.
Not only is Rupp looking forward to being at Taylor professionally; she is also excited to be part of some fun traditions such as Silent Night. She is looking forward to the energy of the night, as she has only ever seen it on ESPN.
However, Rupp is most excited about engaging students in conversations about life experiences and spending time with them.
“Any opportunity that I can … sit down with a student and hear that or share in those moments is infinitely more important than whatever work I have to do in my office,” Rupp said. “Like, those are the reasons why I wake up every morning and get out of my bed and come to work.”
Another new position Taylor is currently looking to fill is multicultural recruiter.
This position will be part of the Admissions Department but will also work closely with the Vice President for Intercultural Leadership and Church Relations Rev. Greg Dyson.
“What they’re helping us do is find additional pockets of students that we’re not reaching right now to let them know that Taylor is a good place for them,” Dyson said.
Whoever fills this role will be tasked with finding, recruiting and encouraging students from various ethnic backgrounds who would be attracted to Taylor and its mission.
Dyson and the rest of Taylor’s Senior Leadership Team believe that everyone should be engaged in the responsibilities surrounding admission and enrollment .
As the university continues to accept applications for this position, Taylor is looking for someone who is passionate, goal-oriented and most importantly, has a real understanding and engagement with different people groups.
“So we’re looking for someone who can say, ‘I may not have experience with Taylor, but I love the Taylor vision. I love the LTC. I love the servant-leader process. I love that,’” Dyson said. “They gotta love that. If it’s not natural for them to love that, this is not going to be a great job for them.”
As the university seeks to hire someone for this position, they are not trying to just fill a job but to match the role with the right applicant.
One of the new faculty members is Assistant Professor of Biology Lauren Woodward. Woodward earned her bachelor’s degree in Biology from Mount Vernon Nazarene University in 2013 before getting her PhD in Molecular Genetics from Ohio State University in 2019.
So whether someone is helping in student development, coaching or finding potential students to join the community, they could be just as new to Taylor as a first-semester freshman.