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Evangel University's Vice President for Student Development announces retirement

Published on Feb 26, 2021 by Erin Hedlun



Sheri Phillips
Dr. Sheri Phillips, vice president for student development, announces her retirement after 35 years of service at Evangel.

SPRINGFIELD, Missouri – Dr. Sheri Phillips, vice president for student development, announces her retirement from Evangel University, effective May 15, 2021, after 35 years of service to the institution.

“It has been my greatest joy to serve Evangel University for the past 35 years,” Phillips said. “I have had amazing opportunities to lead and influence students, programs, and philosophies in this special place.”

Phillips has served in her current position for the last eight years. Prior to her advancement, she worked in a variety of student-focused roles on campus, including the areas of student and community life, counseling, academic support, career services, and program development. She also taught courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

She holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education from Azusa Pacific University, a M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Wheaton College, and a B.S. in Psychology from Evangel University.


Deep roots at Evangel

Phillips is a second-generation graduate of Evangel, having earned her degree in 1981. Her mother attended Evangel shortly after its inception, and her father is a graduate of Central Bible College (then Central Bible Institute), now a part of the university. Both of her sisters, three cousins, and an aunt also attended EU.

Phillips’ mother served as a professor in the Education Department and her aunt was a long-time faculty member in the Music Department.

“Sheri’s long-standing connection to Evangel is reflected in the way she loves and cares for our students,” said Linda Allen, vice president for business and finance. “She works to ensure they not only succeed academically, but also in building a firm emotional and spiritual foundation in life.”


Compassionate and professional leader

Phillips has distinguished herself as a compassionate and professional leader on campus, addressing student issues and campus priorities with a graceful thoughtfulness and professional poise.

“Sheri has served Evangel in several roles that have had a tremendous and lasting impact on the university,” said Dr. Michael Kolstad, vice president for university advancement.

“She has been a tireless professional, an incredibly helpful coworker, and a good friend. She will be truly missed.”

In her role as vice president for student development, Phillips provides leadership and oversight to all Student Development programs and services, including community life, spiritual life, student activities, housing, public safety, counseling, and health services.

She also serves as a member of the President’s Cabinet and University Planning Council, and has been a member of numerous assessment teams and promoted data-driven decision making and program assessment opportunities.

“Sheri is a consummate professional who is dedicated to student care and holistic development,” said Gina Rentschler, director of community life. “Her hallmark as a leader is caring for the whole person, and she does this so well.”


Family highlight

Phillips and her husband, Marty, were married for 37 years before his passing in 2020. She has two adult children who are both married, all of whom graduated from EU, including two with their master’s degrees. She is also the proud grandmother to three young grandchildren.

“What stands out most prominently to me as I reflect on my service at Evangel are the times when I was able to invest in student’s lives, help them process their questions, and explore their journeys.” Phillips said.

“I have had the privilege to work with some of the very best people who have helped shape my understandings and beliefs in incredible ways. My professional career has been so rewarding.”

An interim vice president for student development will be named in the coming weeks.





About Evangel University

Evangel University, with the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS), is a comprehensive Christian university committed to excellence in educating and equipping students to serve the Church and society globally. Evangel and AGTS serve more than 2,200 students from all 50 states and numerous foreign countries, offering 70 undergraduate majors and 19 master and doctoral degrees.