Dean of Students Craig Mack

Dean of Students Craig Mack on Fostering Student Success

April 14, 2017

  • As Dean of Students at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS), Craig Mack is focused on one thing: student success.

    Dean Mack oversees the Division of Student Affairs and is passionate about fostering a student-centered environment across three campuses at MCPHS.

    Having earned his Master of Education from the University of South Carolina and Doctor of Education from Johnson and Wales, Dean Mack's extensive expertise in the field of education informs his role and his experience at MCPHS.

    According to Dean Mack, the Division of Student Affairs works to meet the diverse needs of students, and includes the departments of Residence Life, Campus Life, Counseling Services, Disability Services, and student conduct.

    "Student Affairs is responsible for many of the aspects of a student’s involvement with MCPHS that go beyond the classroom," said Dean Mack. "My staff and I are here to help students throughout their time at MCPHS."

    For Dean Mack and his staff, the goal is to positively impact students in all areas of their life.

    "Our mission is to advance the intellectual, social, cultural, physical, ethical, spiritual, and social development of MCPHS students," said Dean Mack. "We encourage students to maximize their educational opportunities in and outside the classroom through services and programs that are grounded in the core values of MCPHS."

    We sat down with Dean Mack to hear more about his role and how his students inspire him every day.

    What about MCPHS inspires you?

    As the leader of Student Affairs, I see students from all walks of life and get to know them on a personal level. I think what inspires me the most at MCPHS are the stories I hear about our students that extend beyond the classroom. Every day I see students who are working hard to balance things like family and work outside of MCPHS, all while being so dedicated to their studies. On top of that, many of our students spend their spare time volunteering. I see students that spend their time building houses and schools or bringing healthcare and clean water to remote communities across the globe. I am just amazed by the hard work put in by all our students.

    What’s your favorite part of your role?

    Interacting with students in positive ways. From hanging out with students at the Harvest Ball, taking part in Cardinal Days, and going to check out the amazing work of our students during poster sessions and other public exhibitions of their work, I like to be there to cheer students when they accomplish their personal and professional goals, like passing an exam or nailing that job interview. By far, though, the best part of my job is handing them their diploma at Commencement!

    What does it mean to be a member of the MCPHS community?

    I think what defines MCPHS is the strong desire to help people I see both in our students and faculty. Our students are here because they believe that they can make a difference in the world, and I see it everyday in the hard work they put in as part of their studies.

    What does the Dean of Students do? Describe your role at MCPHS.

    I work with staff and students to promote a positive educational environment. One of my primary goals is to proactively seek out ways to improve the student experience at MCPHS. Another important part of my work is meeting with the Student Government Association and other student groups to make sure that students are heard by executive- level leadership.

    How do you personally support student success?

    As the Dean of Students, I think one of the most important things I do is engage with students directly to make sure that they feel heard and to make sure they feel like they are part of a community. I do this by having informal lunches with students, by handing out treats during stressful times like finals and midterms, and by just getting involved in the student experience during things like Cardinal Day and by just being available to students when they need me. Also, as the leader of my Division, I try to motivate my staff to do the same.