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Whitworth president appoints Rhosetta Rhodes as interim vice president of student life

July 10, 2015
Whitworth University President Beck A. Taylor announced today the appointment of Rhosetta Rhodes, ’99, as interim vice president of student life and dean of students for the 2015-16 academic year. Rhodes has served as chief of staff in the office of the president since 2011; from 2007-11 she served as director of the then-named Center for Service-Learning & Community Engagement (now the Dornsife Center for Community Engagement).

Rhodes replaces Dick Mandeville who, after 25 years serving the best interests of Whitworth students and the campus community, will step down as vice president of student life and dean of students on Aug. 1, 2015. Through Sept. 30, Mandeville will serve as special assistant to the president, working on a variety of projects and helping with the transition process in the student-life division.

Mandeville began his career at Whitworth in 1990, and his 22 years as associate dean of students and director of residence life helped to shape Whitworth’s student-life and residence-life programs into among the best in the country. Since his appointment in 2012 as vice president of student life and dean of students, Mandeville has seen the student-life division through many changes and improvements. Most recently, he has led the efforts to hire new leaders in several key positions, including a new associate dean for compliance and community standards; a new director of residence life; and a new director for student diversity, equity and inclusion. Perhaps one of Dick’s greatest achievements while serving as vice president was developing a new and innovative support infrastructure for student success.

“In everything, Dick has had a heart for students and has been a loyal champion of Whitworth's commitment to Christ-centered, mind-and-heart education,” Taylor says. “I will miss his wisdom and his important presence on the president’s cabinet.”

Rhodes earned a B.A. in organizational management from Whitworth in 1999 and a master’s degree in education administration in 2011. According to Taylor she has a keen sense of Whitworth’s student-development philosophy and culture, and she is deeply committed to co-curricular education set within a Christ-centered context.

“Rhosetta brings important knowledge and experience around diversity, equity and inclusion, as well as multicultural education,” Taylor says. “Further, she is eager to help sustain and strengthen the levels of excellence that Whitworth’s student-life programs are accustomed to.”

In addition to her leadership roles at Whitworth, Rhodes is also actively involved in the Spokane community. She currently serves on the boards of directors for Visit Spokane and the East Central Community Organization; she was also appointed to the Washington State Legislative Task Force on Campus Sexual Violence Prevention, and she serves on the committee for the Spokane Citizen Hall of Fame.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of 3,000 students, offers 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Nancy Hines, director of communications, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4638 or