Terrell Elam, Ph.D., has been named Vice President for Enrollment Management at Bethel College. Elam most recently served as Dean of Admissions for Liberty University, the largest nonprofit Christian university in the United States. He will lead Bethel teams in Traditional Admissions, Adult & Graduate Studies Admissions, Financial Aid and Enrollment Marketing. His skills and experience will further advance the goals of Bethel’s strategic enrollment initiative, GROW, which focuses on athletic, traditional admissions and online recruitment areas.
“I am interested in this position to speak into the strategic enrollment initiative (GROW) and to positively affect the lives of those I come into contact with through my daily walk with God,” Elam says. “I want to have oversight over a committed team of individuals toward strategic goals and want to train the next generation of enrollment leaders in how to attract, enroll and retain students with varying interests and gifts.”
For nearly a decade, Elam has overseen the entire enrollment process at Liberty — from prospects to matriculation — for a total resident population of nearly 15,000. Also at Liberty, he created a national marketing campaign, redesigned the transfer credit process and launched personalized marketing initiatives for graduate students, as well as a digital marketing campaign. Additionally, he taught doctoral-level courses online in Conflict Resolution, Educational Leadership and Educational Psychology, among others.
Elam began his career working in K-12 Christian schools, serving as a principal, assistant administrator and administrator at schools in Florida, North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland before moving on to higher education. He holds a Ph.D. in Education from Capella University, focusing on leadership issues in higher education. His dissertation examined how to improve retention of minority students through faculty and staff mentoring.
Elam has been described by those who know him as having a keen sense of discernment and a strategic mind with a relational touch; competent and trailblazing; very knowledgeable about processes and procedures; consistently working to improve efficiencies through targeted action rooted in data that clarifies process steps; and a person of extremely high integrity.
Bethel President Gregg Chenoweth, Ph.D., sees Elam as both a position fit and a faith fit.
“Dr. Elam shares our commitment to Christian higher education and will be a great partner in advancing Bethel’s mission,” Chenoweth says. “We are excited to have him lead our enrollment and recruitment efforts as we launch into a new phase of growth.”
In recent years, Bethel has seen a 60 percent increase in visitors, necessitating the construction of a new Admissions & Alumni Center, which will be completed in 2019. Construction is currently underway for the Paqui and Brian Kelly Auditorium, named after Notre Dame’s head football coach and cancer-surviving wife, and funded through the Kelly Cares Foundation. As the largest lecture hall on campus, this auditorium will support our nationally-recognized School of Nursing and pre-med students, whose acceptance rate to medical school is more than double the national average. Bethel also just announced the Missionary Church Endowed Professor of Biblical theology – a position created to support a 50 percent increase in students studying for vocational ministry over the last five years – and will launch two new sports this fall.