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Dr. Melissa Irvin Named New Associate Vice Provost for Division of Student Success

The University of Tennessee and Dr. Amber Williams, Vice Provost for Student Success, are proud to announce the appointment of Dr. Melissa Irvin as the new Associate Vice Provost (AVP) for the Division of Student Success (DSS). 

As AVP, Dr. Irvin will provide executive leadership to the Academic Success Center, Center for Career Development and Academic Exploration, campus-wide Advising Initiatives, and Vol Success Teams, and serve as a pivotal leader in the Salesforce CRM implementation project.  

Over the course of her career, Dr. Irvin’s accomplishments and experience have demonstrated her expertise in higher education and academic leadership. Her track record at the University of South Florida, particularly in increasing retention and graduation rates, showcases her commitment to student success.

Her involvement with various offices, including Academic Advocacy, High-Impact Practices & Undergraduate Research, and Technology & Analytics, indicates a well-rounded approach to enhancing the overall learning experience for students. 

Dr. Irvin’s national reputation for innovative academic advising and technology-driven strategies implies that she brings fresh perspectives and modern solutions to the challenges in higher education. Her dedication to student welfare and academic excellence aligns closely with the values and mission of the University of Tennessee. 

“I am thrilled we were able to attract such a talented leader to help us continue to enhance our student success strategies,” said Vice Provost for Student Success Amber Williams. “Dr. Irvin is the right leader at the right time—bringing national best practices in academic advising, case management, and technology to Rocky Top.”   

“Growing up in Tennessee I have witnessed first-hand the impact that UT has on the state and on the nation as a change-maker setting standards in undergraduate education and transforming the lives of its students, Dr. Irvin said. “I am honored to join the dedicated and brilliant folks in the Division of Student Success, and embrace the Volunteer spirit of service, scholarship and success.” 

During Dr. Irvin’s tenure at Tennessee Technological University, where she served as Assistant Vice-President for Student Success, the institution achieved record-high fall-to-fall retention rates and successfully implemented student success technology tools, enhancing overall academic support for students.

Dr. Irvin was also recognized as a 2014 Fellow within the Tennessee Board of Regents Maxine Smith Fellowship Program, a reflection of her commitment to student achievement. 

Dr. Irvin earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a Minor in English from Duke University, followed by her Master of Education Leadership, Administration & Supervision (Higher Education) from Middle Tennessee State University. She obtained a Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership and Policy from Vanderbilt University. She’s an active member of NACADA and EDUCASE. 

Dr. Irvin replaces Dr. Leonard Clemons who was recently named Vice President of Student Affairs at Austin Peay State University.