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Baishakhi Taylor Named Dean of the College and Vice President for Campus Life

Dear students, staff and faculty:

It is my pleasure to announce the appointment of Baishakhi Taylor, vice president for student affairs and dean of students at Middlebury College, as Smith’s next dean of the college and vice president for campus life beginning July 1, 2020.

In her new role, Baishakhi will serve as a member of the President’s Cabinet and oversee a variety of offices that work collaboratively to ensure students are successful during their time at Smith. Specifically, she will have responsibility for academic advising, international students, student affairs, residential life, student engagement, health and counseling services, athletics, career services and disability services. She will also oversee several centers, including the Jandon Center for Community Engagement, the Lazarus Center for Career Development, the Lewis Global Studies Center, and the Wurtele Center for Leadership.

In her current role at Middlebury, Baishakhi oversees residential life, judicial affairs, health and wellness education, student activities, orientation and spiritual and religious life. She is also an assistant professor in gender, sexuality and feminist studies and a faculty mentor for Middlebury’s BOLD Women’s Leadership Program. During her tenure at Middlebury, Taylor co-led the Alliance for Inclusive Middlebury, a presidential committee charged with developing a strategic plan for making inclusion a priority for the institution.

Baishakhi is a strategic leader and program builder with a passion for working with students. Her commitment to inclusion and her scholarship on gender, sexuality and feminist studies are clearly aligned with Smith’s core values, and I look forward to welcoming her to our community in July.

I would like to close by extending my thanks to the search committee—Nalini Bhushan, Floyd Cheung, Samantha Earp, Katie McGarry ’21, Melisa Aguila Rua ’21, Michael Thurston, Tina Wildhagen and Will Williams. 


Kathleen McCartney