Dr. William J. Lennox Jr., president of Saint Leo University, has announced the appointment of Dr. Jeffrey D. Senese as provost and senior vice president of Academic and Student Affairs for the university, effective January 16, 2018. This is a newly created position at Saint Leo.

Reporting to the president, the provost and senior vice president of Academic and Student Affairs is designated as the chief academic and student affairs officer of the university and will provide oversight of all educational programs offered on the University Campus, at centers, and online. Included in the duties of the provost are the development, implementation, and assurance of the quality of undergraduate and graduate programs, instruction, research, and service. In this role, Dr. Senese will provide direct, ongoing supervision of the deans of the three schools at the university, as well as the vice president of Student Affairs & Campus Operations. He will be responsible for overall administration of academic and student affairs of the university.

Dr. Senese was most recently provost and vice president of Academic Affairs at Cardinal Stritch University, one of the nation's largest Franciscan universities, in Milwaukee, WI, with about 4,000 students overall. In that role, he was the chief academic officer, working with the four deans and other faculty leaders at the main campus and with various course delivery locations. He also led the Student Success Center, which included student support, residence life, and academic counseling. Prior to this position, he served as vice president of Academic Affairs and as a professor at Cardinal Stritch. He has held similar academic positions throughout his career, including the following: vice provost, vice president of Academic Affairs, and professor at Johnson and Wales University (Providence, RI); vice president of Academic Affairs, dean of faculty, and professor at Philadelphia University (PA); vice president of Academic Affairs and professor at Mount Ida College (Newton Centre, MA); chief academic officer and director of academic affairs at Penn State Wilkes-Barre; and other faculty positions.

"We are excited to have Dr. Senese join Saint Leo University as our first provost," said President Lennox. "He has the expertise and knowledge to take our university to the next level, as we mature as a leading Catholic university. Dr. Senese has years of experience in working with faculty to bring out new academic programs and to update academic offerings when needed. He also knows how to work with multiple stakeholders. He has also been successful at his previous institutions in helping to develop the technological offerings, expanded support services, and partnerships needed to help students succeed."

"I am eager to begin working with Dr. Lennox and my new colleagues on the faculty and staff of Saint Leo and to see the university move to an even higher level of excellence as a teaching institution," Dr. Senese said. "Saint Leo has received many good reviews in recent years, and I would like to see the university extend its reputation into more states. Universities that promote moral and spiritual development, as well as critical thinking, provide our society with invaluable learning environments, and that is what Saint Leo has to offer."

Dr. Senese earned a BS in the administration of justice from The Pennsylvania State University; an MA in criminology from Indiana State University; and a PhD in multidisciplinary social sciences from the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University. In addition to writing articles and book chapters in numerous law enforcement publications, he is the author of Applied Research Methods in Criminal Justice and Criminology (Nelson-Hall Publishers, 1997). 

Active in his communities, Dr. Senese has been a board member for the Milwaukee Urban League, a member of the Workforce Funding Alliance Leadership Council in Milwaukee, a member of the Rhode Island State Career Pathways System Task Force, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia, among many other roles.

Dr. Senese and his wife, Alicia Frederico-Senese, have two children: Mia, who is a senior marketing major at Bloomsburg University in Pennsylvania, and Daniel, who is a first-year biology student at Duquesne University in Pennsylvania.

Media: For more information, contact Jo-Ann Johnston, academic communications manager, at (352) 588-7237 or jo-ann.johnston@saintleo.edu.