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The Wood Word

The news site of Marywood University

The Wood Word

The news site of Marywood University

The Wood Word

Who’s Who on Campus: Kevin Farrell

Meet Marywood’s new Director of Student Engagement

Most students know Kevin Farrell from the plethora of emails sent out by him and the Student Engagement office, but many do not know what he does in his role as its director.

Originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania, Farrell moved to Arkansas with his mother and stepfather as a young adult and received his bachelor’s degree at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith. When he decided to start working for higher educational institutions, he pursued his master’s degree from Arkansas Tech University.

Farrell worked for multiple institutions before relocating back to Scranton to be closer to his family. After serving as director of alumni engagement for three years, he said he is excited to take on his new position. He is also three semesters into his doctorate degree in the Strategic Leadership and Administrative program at Marywood.

Farrell said he oversees the entire office of student engagement, specifically working with Greek Life and Orientation. He split oversight of all student clubs among himself, Assistant Director Jordan Houston and Coordinator of Student Engagement Thomas Flynn. Farrell said he split the oversight duties to “offer a better service to the students.”

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Farrell said his passion for working with students and in higher educational institutions started in his sophomore year. After a few family health problems, his college advisors checked up on him, making sure that he was keeping up with homework and that he was in a good mindset during this difficult time.

Farrell recounted, “I remember– it happened in the summer, it happened in July– and I remember them reaching out to make sure that things were okay with me… My advisors (played) a crucial role in keeping me positive and getting me through it.” Through this experience and helping out at orientations at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith, he discovered he wanted to help students like his advisors had helped him.

When asked what he was most excited about in his new position, Farrell said he wants to try new things.“Things are going to stick and stay and be awesome, and things are going to flop and fall and be terrible and I’m open for it all,” he commented. He wants students to join and create new clubs, create a niche for themselves and have students get involved in leadership positions to help other students grow skill sets that will benefit them after college.

Farrell noted he has three main goals for the Office of Student Engagement this year, two of those being organization and collaboration between all the clubs on campus. The leadership and planning day, which happened at the beginning of the year, was a large step in promoting better coordination among the clubs. Farrell explained, “If I had five different bingo nights from five different clubs, chances are I’m only going to one of them. If we combine those five, you’re going to have 500-600 people coming.” He hopes more clubs reach out about events and try to do as many as they can.

He said a final goal would be to organize a dance marathon. He ran a similar event in a previous role, which resulted in raising $100,000 throughout the year to go towards a local children’s hospital. The Dance Marathon is a year-long fundraiser and this year, Farrell has partnered with Reilly Children’s Hospital in Allentown. The actual dance, which he projects will happen in March or April, will be a 12-hour event where, in Farrell’s words “we stand for those who can’t.” The event would have food, games, activities, and competitions for everyone attending. At the end of the marathon, families from the children’s hospital will come out to speak about the impact of this event, as well as announce the amount of money raised.

Farrell said he wants students to bring new ideas to the table, build new organizations and inspire fellow students to create change on campus through community building.

Freshman Aida Tenezaca works with Farrell through the work-study program and said it has been fun to help out with the Student Engagement office. Her job is to stamp the posters for club events, answer phones and help students who visit the office. Through this position, she has learned more about the many clubs the school holds. When asked about continuing her efforts, she said, “I plan on working here next year.”

Follow the Office of Student Engagement on Instagram @mu_student_engagement.

Contact the writer: [email protected]

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About the Contributor
Faith Givens
Faith Givens, News Editor
Faith Givens is a freshman Multimedia Communications major with a focus in Film, TV, and digital production. She is also a member of the Language and Literature club and TV Marywood. Outside of Marywood, she likes to read and listen to music.
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