A Conversation with Kerry Spicer

By | February 21, 2023
Kerry Spicer holding a mug that says Dean Life

Kerry Spicer, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students

We sat down with Kerry Spicer, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students to talk about her role at Daemen and what she loves most about it. 

Tell us what a Dean of Students is 

A lot of people don’t necessarily understand what a Dean of Students is and I always tell them that it starts outside the classroom supporting students. I oversee Housing and Residence Life, The CHIP Center, Student Conduct and Advocacy and lastly, I co-chair our Campus CARE Team.  I help students work through questions, concerns and issues as they navigate everyday challenges so they don’t have to be alone. 

I want students to know that I am their support outside of the classroom and they can come talk to me if something is going on. My very favorite thing to do is listen to them. One of the expressions we use a lot is, “My door is always open.” I love that expression because that is definitely the Daemen campus-we are always accessible to students and I want them to know that. 

What do you love about working at Daemen? 

I love the community that Daemen radiates and I love working here. We alway talk about the Daemen family but it really is a community where everybody cares about each other.  One of my favorite days is the first day of school. I always rock my Daemen blue and I am so excited when I see the students come back on campus.  In addition to that, I am always honored to be a witness to graduation day.  To see the students cross the finish line after working so hard for so many years is thrilling.  They have not only put in the hard work studying but have navigated life through it all. I love the joy on everyone’s face and hearing families cheer for their loved ones. I am always cheering right along with them. 

Kerry Spicer in Commencement robes taking a selfie with students

What advice would you give to students? 

One of my favorite expressions is “There is not one path forward.” A lot of people come to college and think that there is just one way through it. While it may feel that way, life happens. There are road bumps and things change. We put ourselves in boxes and panic when something changes.  I want students to realize that if you hit one of those road bumps, it is ok.  

That is my biggest advice. Along with that, I would say that if something is hard and not what you expected it to be-say the hard things out loud and talk to somebody.  When I say that Daemen is an incredibly supportive community I really mean that. Even if we don’t have the answer we know how to guide you to where you need to be. My last piece of advice is get involved. Your college experience can have more than one definition. Find your people, find activities and clubs. Joy outside the classroom is there just waiting for you to find it.