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Jeremy Schenk Inducted into ISU's College of Education Hall of Fame

I think the best teachers are the ones who can connect with their students, invest in them and be that teacher of life.”

Jeremy Schenk
Associate Vice President for Operations and Services

Award recognizes Schenk’s accomplishments and commitment to the field of student affairs

Jeremy Schenk, associate vice president for operations and services at Northwestern, will be inducted on Friday into the College of Education Hall of Fame at his alma mater, Illinois State University. jeremy-headshot-2.jpg

“Illinois State has one of the top teaching programs in the state, and it means a lot to be recognized,” Schenk said. “I’ve always been really proud to say I’m from the Illinois State because I know the impact the College of Education has on the education system in our state and across the country.” 

Founded as a teacher’s college, Illinois State annually inducts graduates who have an exceptional level of professional accomplishment, volunteer work and a commitment to improving education services. 

Schenk began his career in student affairs at Illinois State 25 years ago, working alongside his wife, Kate. For nearly his whole career, Schenk has been part of the Association of College Unions International, serving in many leadership roles, including president during the pandemic. 

“I went to college as a first-generation, low-income student,” Schenk said. “I don’t know if I would have made it through college without the student affairs professionals who invested in me. When I finally realized that, I knew it was the career path I wanted to take.” 

Schenk arrived at Northwestern in 2016, where he served as executive director of the Norris University Center, before stepping into the role of associate vice president after more than five years on the Evanston campus. 

Through his role in Operations and Services within the Division of Student Affairs at Northwestern, Schenk has helped lead projects including the Norris East Lawn redevelopment and implementing COVID-19 guidelines that helped the Northwestern community through the pandemic. 

“Jeremy has that rare and essential quality in truly impactful leaders—a desire to help students and the Northwestern community while deflecting praise or credit,” Northwestern Vice President for Student Affairs Susan Davis said. “This is a richly deserved honor for someone who embodies everything working in Student Affairs is about.”

In addition to his work with Northwestern Student Affairs, Schenk is a father of four and said the words of his daughter Michela continue to inspire him throughout his career. 

“She once asked me, ‘Are you a teacher?’ and I replied, ‘No honey, I help put on programs and events, but I’m not a teacher.’ Michela went on to say, ‘So you are a teacher,’ and I replied, ‘I don’t teach in a classroom, I help students learn about leadership.’ But Michela quickly interrupted me,” Schenk said. “And she told me, ‘No Daddy, you are a teacher, you are a teacher of life.’”  

“I think the best teachers are the ones who can connect with their students, invest in them and be that teacher of life,” he added.