Skip to main content

Burgwell Howard Named to Student Engagement Post

As dean of students, Howard was originator of the March Thru the Arch concept

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Dean of Students Burgwell “Burgie” Howard has been named to the newly created position of assistant vice president for student engagement in student affairs at Northwestern University.

In her announcement, Vice President for Student Affairs Patricia Telles-Irvin called on Howard’s colleagues to join her in congratulating him on his new role. “I am confident he will lead the area of student engagement for the division with great success,” she said.

Howard has been at Northwestern for the past seven years, first as the assistant to the vice president for student affairs and currently as the dean of students.  

As dean of students, Howard has been responsible for a great number of duties, including student safety and well-being, student and family communications, partnering with academic units, student conduct, and community relations.

Telles-Irvin emphasized that “it is in the areas of supporting and improving student life where Howard has really flourished -- trying to increase student engagement on campus and creating a stronger Northwestern community.”

Howard was the originator of the March Thru the Arch concept and subsequently worked collaboratively with staff to develop the “Purple Prep” guidebook for first-year students. He has served as committee member and chair of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day planning committee. He also has been involved annually in creating a safe Dillo Day experience for students.

In this new role, Howard will be responsible for the following areas: Center for Student Involvement; Multicultural Student Affairs; New Student and Family Program; Fraternity and Sorority Life; and Religious Life.

These departments have been charged to work collaboratively to increase student-wide signature events, to enhance an inclusive and welcoming community, to create stronger connections among all students and to guide Northwestern through intentional programming. These areas will also work closely with academic affairs to provide opportunities for seamless experiences for students between their out-of-the-classroom learning and some of their classroom experiences.

Prior to arriving at Northwestern, Howard served as the assistant dean and director of student activities at Bowdoin College for eight years and at Colgate University for two years. In each of these institutions, he was responsible for student organizations; co-curricular programs, including lectures, concerts and special events; and sponsorship of university-wide student events.

At Dartmouth College, his alma mater, he served as the associate director in the Office of Alumni Affairs, where he managed the alumni club speaking program, coordinated all undergraduate alumni programs, arranged all the programming for young alumni and oversaw special events, such as homecoming, reunions and volunteer weekends.

Howard received his undergraduate degree in psychology from Dartmouth College, and he earned his master’s degree from Stanford University in higher education administration.  

Back to top