The new academic year brings new faces among the college staff. Elissa Heil is the new Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty for Wilson College.
“There are two main parts to my job,” explained Dean Heil. “One is to make sure the ‘trains’ run on time, to oversee our programs and staff. The second part is to look toward the future and see where the tracks go.”
Her favorite part of her job is seeing all the possibilities and prioritizing them, along with getting to know people. Heil only wishes she had more hours in the day.
“There is a lot of pressure on Liberal Arts Colleges like Wilson. I see my job as being an ambassador for the kind of education that Liberal Art Colleges offer,” Heil shared. “It has become obvious that health sciences are growing as a career choice. That is something I plan to consider the possibility of adding health science program classes and expanding our majors.”
Dean Heil has many focuses for this year. She wants to learn everything about Wilson, from the history to meeting the students and staff. She and the Dean of Students Marybeth Williams plan to look into the First Year Seminar (FYS) program.
“When can we get all the students together in the same class?” asked Dean Heil. “We can do that through the FYS class.”
One of Dean Heil’s biggest goals is to review the academic programs on campus. She wants to leverage the faculty’s talent and monitor the academic support center to make sure students are happy and getting the support they need.
Heil suggests that students should, “Take advantage of the environment and opportunities here, whether it is the size of our campus or the close knit relationships between professors and students. Really relish the general education courses because one day you will look back and be thankful for them. Most importantly find a passion. That is what Wilson is here for: to help you find a passion with purpose where you can make a difference.”
Dean Heil spent most of her career in a school very much like Wilson, so Wilson is a great fit for her. “It feels like home. I feel like I can make a difference here.”
Dean of Faculty Elissa Heil has some great advice for everyone at Wilson. We look forward to seeing what she brings to Wilson in the years to come.