New Associate Dean of Students for Residence Life Kelsey Taylor talks on creating community and finding balance

Since first discovering her passion senior year of her undergraduate studies, Associate Dean of Students for Residence Life Kelsey Taylor has worked to create a career in residence life and higher education as a whole.

Originally from Atlanta, Georgia, Taylor earned her bachelor’s degree in history from Berry College before going on to earn her master’s in higher education administration from The University of Alabama. While at UA, she was accepted into an assistantship in housing and residential communities.

Always excited to meet new people, Taylor has continued her career in the field in order to create welcoming communities on campus and develop a residence life program that students feel comfortable becoming a part of.

Get to know Taylor more in our most recent staff Q&A: (responses have been edited for clarity and brevity).

You’re working on creating new residence life programming and training for future residence life staff. Why is it important to you to develop those programs here at Lees-McRae?

To me, it is important to make sure that students are having fun with our programs, but are also growing and learning more about other cultures, about themselves, and about how to make sure they are contributing to their wellness. With my training of the resident assistants, I want to make sure that they feel confident in their position and learn to balance having fun with their residents in programs, while also not being afraid to engage them in topics that will bring about a learning moment for them and for the residents.

In addition to the above, what else are you working on?

I’m currently working on some ideas for our staff to give back to the Banner Elk community and to the Lees-McRae community. This includes small projects on campus, but also some volunteer opportunities. Another project I am working on is a little library in my office. I would like to bring some of my own books that I believe students will enjoy. I am also wanting to create a welcoming, comfortable environment in my office where students can sit and chat about anything, or even just come by to do some homework. If I am there, please come by and say hello!

If you could speak directly to students right now what would you say?  

My goal is to get to know you as a student body, but then you as individuals as well. If you ever have an idea for how to improve on our housing, residence life programming, or anything else, please let me know. You as residents see much more of the small details in housing that I may not, which can make it more difficult for me to see where we can continue to improve.

What is a fun fact about you or something that people might not know about you?

Let’s see…I used to row in college and I still would love to win the lottery so that I can buy a boat for myself one day. I have also been learning Hungarian so that I can translate some older letters from my grandpa back in the day.

Q&A with Kelsey Taylor
By Nina MastandreaAugust 12, 2019
FamiliesCampus Life