Campus & Community

McNeal and Joyner to lead Belle Glade and Lox campuses

Palm Beach State College has hired new executive deans for its Belle Glade and Loxahatchee Groves campuses.

Dr. LaTanya McNeal will serve in the position on the Belle Glade campus and Dr. Stephen Joyner at Loxahatchee Groves. Since 2015, McNeal has served as the assistant dean of student services at the Belle Glade campus. Joyner was previously a higher education enrollment consultant and dean of student services at Miami Dade College.

McNeal and Joyner, who officially begin April 1,  will oversee the student services functions of their campus and will work to expand partnerships and build relationships with local leaders.

They will replace Dr. Maria Vallejo, who serves as the vice president of growth and expansion and provost at both locations. She is retiring March 29.

According to college administrators, the positions were created after staff at each campus expressed their desire to see one leader in place full time at each location.

“I am honored to have been selected as the executive dean for the Belle Glade campus, and I am excited to build upon the campus legacy,” McNeal said. “Having started my career with PBSC as the first Student Learning Center Manager at the Belle Glade campus, I have seen firsthand the positive impact that tutoring and collaboration with the faculty and academic advisors have on student success. I am passionate about the student voice and look forward to continuing my collaboration with the campus Student Government Association and hosting student forums.”

One of her focuses will be to connect students to businesses based upon their career interest.

“I believe in the opportunities our students are exposed to in our Career Centers,” McNeal said. “I personally discovered career opportunities with Palm Beach State College (namely the Student Learning Center new position) by attending a Career Fair at the Gardens campus.”

McNeal has 23 years of experience in postsecondary and secondary education. She began her educational career as a high school biology, chemistry and physics teacher and subsequently served as an instructional science coach, high school assistant principal of student services, vice principal of curriculum and instruction and principal of an International Baccalaureate magnet middle school. She has also served as an adjunct professor at Palm Beach State and Jacksonville University.

Joyner has over 20 years experience in higher education administration and teaching. His career began as an academic advisor at Georgia State University in Atlanta, and over the years he has held leadership positions in all areas of student services and student affairs, including admissions, placement/testing, international student services, advising, financial aid, disability services, student life, and student conduct among others in both four-year and two-year institutions.

In his most recent positions, he served as the chief student affairs officer, responsible for creating and implementing strategic enrollment management plans to meet institutional targets in enrollment, retention and completion. He has partnered with local middle/high schools in the development of dual-enrollment and early college programs and with business and industry leaders to develop competency-based education, internship and service-learning opportunities for students.

“I am happy to be joining the PBSC family and look forward to working with the team at Loxahatchee Groves to support partnerships that help meet the needs of our students, the community and the College,” Joyner said.  “I am excited to work closely with college and community leaders to implement programs that will support student success, and to discover new growth opportunities that will ensure our students are prepared for a 21st century workforce.”

He has a particular interest in working with students from the foster care system and developing programming to help students overcome homelessness and food insecurity.

McNeal and Joyner will report to Dr. Peter Barbatis, vice president of enrollment management, on the Lake Worth campus.

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