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Santa Clara University Names Vice President of Enrollment Management

Wednesday, Jul. 29, 2009

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – July 29, 2009.  Santa Clara University President Michael Engh, S.J., has named Michael B. Sexton as the University’s new vice president for enrollment management.

Sexton spent 18 years in enrollment management at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Ore., as dean of admissions. He will help Santa Clara University chart its strategy for student recruitment, enrollment, diversity, and financial aid.

“Michael Sexton has a great track record in the field of enrollment management,” said Engh. “Mike has achieved a national reputation for attracting top students to an evolving and growing institution, and we are lucky to have him. We are looking forward to the vision and experience he will bring to this position.”

Acknowledging the vital role enrollment management plays in Santa Clara University’s strategic goals, Sexton will report directly to Engh.

Sexton comes from Lewis & Clark, an institution with a total student enrollment of just over 3,300 and a $231 million endowment, to SCU, with more than 8,700 students and a $540 million endowment. He oversaw Lewis & Clark College’s enrollment efforts during a period when their applications grew from 2,100 to more than 5,300, an increase of almost 150 percent, while at the same time increasing diversity as well as the grade point average and standardized scores of entering freshmen.

Sexton, 56, previously worked at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn., and Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa.

He was introduced to Santa Clara University on a personal level several years ago when his daughter was accepted into the College of Arts and Sciences. “I had heard of Santa Clara professionally, but during her years on this campus I became very familiar with the quality of the Santa Clara experience and education, especially from a parent’s perspective,” he said.

“Her four years at Santa Clara were transformative and as her parents we very much valued the experience that she, and students like her, got at the university,” he added.

“I am delighted to have this opportunity to help take Santa Clara to its next level of excellence,” Sexton said. “Fr. Engh and I are, in a sense, starting our tenure here together. I passionately believe that higher education is the best investment families can make for their children, and I appreciate having been a part of that process for 30 years.”

Sexton will be moving with his wife Colleen to start his new post Sept. 1.

He has a B.S. in mathematics from the State University College at Buffalo, N.Y., and an M.A. in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio.

Sexton is a member of the College Board and the National Association for College Admissions Counselors (NACAC), the Pacific Northwest Association for College Admission Counseling, and the Education Conservancy. A nationally known speaker and conference panelist on issues, Sexton has presented at NACAC and The College Board and is known for his commitment to diversity and access to higher education.

“I have valued my time at Lewis & Clark but coming to Santa Clara University presents new opportunities,” Sexton said. “I look forward to working with an experienced staff in admissions and financial aid to further the University’s outreach to students in California and beyond.”

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California’s Silicon Valley, offers its 8,758 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master’s and law degrees and engineering Ph.D.s. Distinguished nationally by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master’s universities, California’s oldest operating higher-education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. For more information, see

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