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New Assistant VP and Dean of Students appointed

After almost 16 years of serving in student affairs at the University of Texas at Arlington, Heather Snow now steps into the role of assistant vice president for Student Life and dean of students at Texas Woman’s University.

In this position, Snow acts as an advocate for all TWU students. She stated that as the dean of students, she acts as a centralized resource that students can seek help from, especially in meetings and environments where their voices may go unheard.

Heather Snow, new AVP of TWU

“A dean of students should be a collaborator across campus to make sure that any decision we are making, we are putting students first in the equation,” Snow said. “So, ‘What is the impact of this decision on students? Is this something that will benefit students’ success at its core?’”

Areas of involvement as the AVP and dean of students include the Office for Civility and Community Standards, Scholar Programs and Center for First-Generation Students. An article published by TWU expanded on this, explaining that this position also partly holds responsibility for crisis management, risk mitigation and student retention.

Snow came into this line of work after her AVP in Public Relations at Spalding University “changed the entire trajectory of [her] life” as a college student. As a first-generation student and one of seven children to a single mother, Snow said she initially did not know how to navigate resources once she got to university.

“As I was walking down that city block, I was crying because I felt like I had made a horrible mistake of coming to college,” Snow said. “I didn’t know how to get my books because I couldn’t afford them. I didn’t know how to get a work-study position so I could afford my books. I didn’t know anything, or where to go. And this amazing human being—her name is Kim Price Graves— stopped me and said, ‘What’s the matter? Can I help you?’ And I told her everything that was going on in my head. And she took probably 20 minutes out of her day to walk me to the financial aid office and help me figure out how to get a book voucher, to walk me to the bookstore and show me how to get my books. And then she said, ‘You need a work study job. Come back to my office tomorrow. I’m gonna hire you.’”

According to Snow, that act of kindness encouraged her to join campus activities and get more involved in the university as a resident assistant. By her second semester, Snow was certain that she wanted to work on a college campus because she loved the experience.

“Dean of Students’ work […] gives you the opportunity to meet students who are in their most vulnerable state,” Snow said. “Whether it is because they’re struggling financially or they are dealing with you know, a disciplinary case and student contact, or they’ve had a medical circumstance, that means that they might have to step out and [you] throw them a lifeline, like what was thrown to me.”

At UT Arlington, much of Snow’s work focused on fulfilling basic needs in access for students. One program was called the One Percent Challenge, where Snow worked with a co-founder of Fountain Residential (a collegiate apartment company) to donate one percent of their available beds in a neighboring complex to financially-challenged UTA students. Snow also helped implement a student emergency fund and open a full-service student pantry for food, household supplies, toiletries and professional attire. 

Snow, who began her position on March 6, said she hopes to bring similar ideas to TWU in her time here. In the meantime, she will first focus on identifying gaps in services and programs in order to better support the university’s students.

“For now, I’m just really trying to immerse myself in the TWU culture to see everything amazing that’s happening and then I’ll have some great ideas, but for now, I am learning.” Snow said.

Jocelyn Truong can be reached via email at

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