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Kathryn Enke2013 Rising Alumni

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Kathryn Enke manages the president's office, ensuring effective development and execution of presidential projects and initiatives, and provides high level guidance to the president on a diverse range of institutional matters. She maintains an active research agenda focusing broadly on the ways that identities mediate experiences in higher education.


Chief of Staff and Executive Assistant to the President
College of Saint Benedict

CEHD Degree

M.A. and Ph.D., Educational Policy and Administration

What professor was most influential during your time in CEHD?

Rebecca Ropers-Huilman taught two of my most memorable courses (Gender in Higher Education, Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education), served as my advisor, and co-authored several research papers with me. She also connected me with other graduate students who could provide support during my program.

What skills are important to succeed as a young professional today?

I think it is most important to have the basic and transferable skills gained through a liberal arts education: the ability to synthesize and evaluate information in order to apply it to specific problems; the ability to listen, speak, and write clearly; the ability to discern individual and collective good when making decisions; the ability to think critically and creatively; the ability to set priorities and manage time; the ability to collaborate with, set a vision for, and motivate others; and the ability to trust in yourself as you take risks and learn from life experiences.

What is a fun fact about you?

I earned my two advanced degrees in only four years. That has to be some kind of record!

When you have free time, what do you do?

I enjoy spending time with family and friends. I also like watching movies, playing the piano, and planning trips to new places.

What gets you excited about work?

My job presents new challenges and problems to solve each day, and that is invigorating to me. My tasks in a single day can include handling a call from a concerned parent or alumna, helping to balance the budget for the college, strategizing about enrollment goals, preparing for a board of trustees meeting, drafting a speech or letter on behalf of the college president, planning for a crisis situation, and event planning. I enjoy the variety and constant activity, and seeing students’ accomplishments.