Senior Assistant Director
Jennifer Dexter is passionate about promoting Purdue to prospective students — and, in turn, helping shape their futures at the University and beyond.
Dexter is a senior assistant director and the scholarship coordinator in the Office of Admissions. In addition to recruiting prospective students, Dexter — a Purdue alumna — serves as the central point of contact for the University's merit-based scholarships. They are the Beering, Stamps, Trustees and Presidential scholarships.
What are these scholarships' details?
The Beering Scholarship program was created by Purdue's ninth president, Steven C. Beering, who raised private funds for the endowment. Each scholarship covers full educational benefits for a bachelor's degree and opportunities to pursue a master's degree and a doctoral degree. It also provides funding for a study-abroad experience.
The Stamps Family Charitable Foundation Scholars program, founded by Roe and Penny Stamps, funds the full cost of undergraduate studies at Purdue and includes a $10,000 enrichment fund for select recipients. The enrichment fund may be used for approved activities such as studying abroad or helping recipients take unpaid internships.
Applications to the Beering and Stamps Scholars program are accepted on an invitation-only basis. Each December, invitations are sent to a select few of the highest-achieving high school seniors admitted to Purdue. From the close to 100 invited to apply, a committee of faculty and staff selects recipients based on a holistic review. Currently, there are 29 Beering Scholars and 14 Stamps Scholars on the West Lafayette campus.
Additionally, the University has Trustees and Presidential Scholarships. These scholarships range in financial awards from $4,000 to $16,000.
What are your duties related to these merit-based scholarships?
I bring consistency and professional comfort to everyone associated with the scholarships' selection processes. Coordinating the processes related to these scholarships has become more complicated in recent years, but the selection committees continue to be flexible and have embraced the changes that have occurred. Going forward, my job will be to continue to solidify these processes.
How did you embark upon a career in admissions?
While I was pursuing my bachelor's and master's degrees at Purdue, I had the opportunity to travel for the University and to participate in recruitment efforts across the United States. I also was a tour guide for the Office of Admissions. After completing my master's degree, I realized that continuing to share my knowledge and love for the University would be an exciting career. I was fortunate to be offered a position as assistant director of admissions shortly after completing my graduate studies.
How does having a central administrative point of contact for these scholarships help the University?
It's important to have a central point of contact to ensure that the process of awarding is accurate and each candidate is reviewed appropriately. There are scholarship coordinators in every academic college, so I make certain to have a working relationship with all of them. This keeps the process organized and ensures they have the information they need to successfully coordinate their selection processes.
Beyond working with other scholarship coordinators and academic college representatives, I have a working relationship with many departments and units across campus. These connections are important so I can successfully complete my job tasks. It also ensures I can properly refer individuals when they have questions that might be better addressed by my University colleagues.
What are your duties related to recruiting?
I participate in our office's many recruitment programs offered throughout the year, including the presentations we give every day to prospective students, their families and support networks. Also, as an “on-duty” counselor, I am available to students and guests who call or walk into the office seeking more information about Purdue or details regarding their status.
What is you favorite part about your job?
For me, this isn't just a job — I love Purdue and everything it represents.
Every day, I have the opportunity to work with people in Schleman Hall and across campus who are prestigious, humble and student-focused individuals. Every day, I meet or interact with someone who inspires me in some way to be better professionally and personally. Together, we do difficult things with kindness and compassion.