Jeff Huang, Vice President for Admission and Financial Aid, Senior Advisor to the President, and Visiting Professor of Philosophy, will depart at the end of the academic year to become President of The St. Paul’s Schools in Brooklandville, Maryland.
Dean Huang joined CMC in 1995 as Associate Dean of Students and Dean of Campus Life. He served as Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Affairs, before adding financial aid and admissions to his purview in 2012. He has been in his current position since 2015.
This spring will also be the last time Huang teaches his signature course, Philosophical Questions, which he has faithfully offered for 35 semesters since 1997.
President Hiram E. Chodosh said Huang “has inspired us for more than two decades, from counseling to recruiting, from teaching philosophy to playing intramural soccer, from the development of so many new programs to his generous collaborative leadership. He has had an indelible impact on all of us.”
Huang has worked for three of the College’s presidents. His accomplishments include managing the Dean of Students’ office as student enrollment grew to 1,300 from 800, contributing to the design and renovation of numerous campus buildings, and creating CMC’s Disability Services program, the CMC Bike Shop, and the Center for Civic Engagement. Huang has spoken widely on the value of a liberal arts education and given four speeches at the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum.
“I genuinely feel that I learned as much from being here, or more, than the people I tried to teach and advise,” said Huang. “It has been an absolute honor to work at CMC. Getting to know students and watching them go on to do amazing things after they graduate, and playing a small role in their lives, has been really rewarding.”
As a freshman, Tarah Gilbreth ’18 sent an email to Dean Huang at the suggestion of her mother, who had heard him speak at a campus event. He replied swiftly, asking her to come to his office to talk—along with what sandwich she wanted from Jimmy John’s and if she’d like a Dr. Pepper (his favorite).
“He made me feel we had known each other for years,” said Gilbreth. “I told him I was thinking about transferring, and he said in the short term that he would help make my experience at CMC a whole lot better. In the long term, if I did decide to go, he would write a recommendation.”
Gilbreth took Huang’s class, and went on to major in Philosophy and Public Affairs. “He takes down the hurdles for students. I can call him at any time and he will offer the advice I need,” said Gilbreth, who now works for Trammell Crow in Dallas. “He knows I am capable even when I don’t feel that way.”
A native of New Paltz, N.Y., Huang holds BA and MA degrees in Philosophy from Colgate University, and a PhD in Philosophy from the Claremont Graduate University. (His dissertation: “The Ethical Lives of College Students in the Digital Age”).
Huang’s wife, Catie, was a teacher at CMC Children’s School for nine years and worked with the CMC Admission office for three years. The move will bring them closer to family on the East Coast, where they both grew up.
“My wife and I are educators at our core. We lived in the Dean’s house near campus and hosted—I don’t know how many—students in our home,” he said. “If you are an educator, you love lightbulb moments in young people. Schools have an opportunity to create those moments.”