Long-serving St. John’s Leader Examines Urban-Serving Institutions

Andre McKenzie
November 19, 2019

André McKenzie, Ed.D., Vice Provost for Academic Support Services and Faculty Development at St. John’s University, coauthored a chapter on student success in a new book that focuses on the unique structure, students, and missions of urban-serving institutions.

“In urban settings, student affairs work and the methods we employ to do that work often determine whether a student will be successful in the classroom. What we know in urban settings is that the nature of our student populations dictates that we employ a multifaceted and collaborative approach to supporting student services,” according to Dr. McKenzie, who is also Adjunct Associate Professor in The School of Education, as well as in the Institute for Core Studies at St. John’s.

Student Affairs in Urban-Serving Institutions Book Cover

The chapter, “Promoting Student Success,” coauthored by Corlisse Thomas, Ed.D., Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Rutgers University–Newark, is included in the volume, Student Affairs in Urban-Serving Institutions: Voices from Senior Leaders, edited by Anna M. Ortiz, Long Beach State University (Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, June 2019).

In examining the challenges and contributions of student affairs professionals in serving and meeting the needs of urban students, the book discusses how services and interventions must reflect the reality of students, understand the sociopolitical forces that affect students’ lives, and bring together a network that includes family and community.

Dr. McKenzie said Dr. Thomas asked him to serve as coauthor of the chapter. “Dr. Thomas wanted to provide a perspective to our chapter on promoting student success that incorporated perspectives from both student affairs and academic affairs,” he said. “While I currently serve as Vice Provost and report to the ‘academic side’ of the University, my background in the field of higher education began in student affairs.”

“Having worked at St. John’s for more than 30 years in a variety of student support roles, plus my prior work in an urban-serving institution in Chicago, IL, makes me very familiar with the population of students that serve as the focus of the book."