Vice President for Student Affairs
Chris Miller


Chris Miller serves as the vice president and dean of students for Clemson University Division of Student Affairs. Miller was appointed to the full-time position in April 2021 after serving in an interim capacity following the retirement of Almeda Jacks.

Miller successfully guided Student Affairs through a transitional period in which several of its departments relocated within the institution to the Finance and Operations Division — creating a leaner, more student-focused organizational structure within Student Affairs. In the 2020-21 academic year, Miller and his staff rose to the challenge of providing support services in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite a shift from traditional campus operations and a significant impact to the Clemson experience beyond the classroom, Student Affairs has continued to deliver quality, efficient and relevant programs and services for students and families.

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Senior Associate Vice President
George Smith


George Smith serves as senior associate vice president within the Division of Student Affairs and since Fall 2019 has held administrative oversight for several areas, including: Campus Life, Campus Recreation, the Center for Career and Professional Development, Community and Ethical Standards, Student Affairs Publications and Student Health Services.

Smith held the role of associate vice president and chief of staff from 2014-19. In addition to his role as primary advisor to the vice president, he held operational oversight of the division’s business enterprise, strategic planning & assessment, and all communications, brand management and corporate sponsorship functions. He was also heavily involved in development and donor relations initiatives. During that time, Student Affairs raised significant funds to build facilities to support student growth and development through the Barnes Center, Snow Family Outdoor Fitness and Wellness Complex and Samuel J. Cadden Chapel.

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Associate Vice President
Johnson Link


Johnson Link is in his fifth year as associate vice president within the Division of Student Affairs in 2019–20. His role transitioned when Chris Miller assumed the interim role as vice president in October. Link provides divisional oversight for business continuity of operations and enterprise risk management. He is also the liaison to the Joint City University Advisory Board, which restructured to focus seven area-specific workgroups beginning in the fall of 2019.

From 2015-19, Link oversaw the division’s municipal services, which included Business Continuity and Security Planning, Emergency Management, Fire/EMS, Municipal Court and Parking and Transportation Services. He also previously held administrative oversight for Clemson University’s Police Department.

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Assistant Vice President for Campus Life
Mandy Hays


Mandy Hays has been a member of the Division of Student Affairs since 1993. Currently, she serves as the assistant vice president for campus life, a post she has held since 2015. In this role, she is responsible for the direction and supervision of two departments: Campus Activities & Events, as well as the newly created Center for Student Leadership and Engagement.

The collective and overarching goal of Campus Life is to enhance the campus experience for students through its programs, activities, services and facilities. Campus Activities and Events manages many key indoor and outdoor campus facilities and through an intentional student employment model, provides event coordination, technical and other client services. The Center for Student Leadership and Engagement provides all students with pathways to engagement, leadership and success from the time of their admission until graduation.

Senior Associate Dean of Students
Kimberly Poole


Kimberly Poole serves as senior associate dean of students within Clemson University’s Division of Student Affairs. She has been the director of the Office of Advocacy and Success since its inception in 2015 and serves as designee for the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students in his absence.

In her role, Poole oversees a staff whose overarching purpose is to serve students as a trusted place for care and referrals to campus and community partners. Advocacy and Success manages student cases within the CARE Network, a referral system for academic, behavioral, career, finance, relationship and wellness concerns. The office also manages the dean on-call system, which is responsible for following up on late-night and weekend hospital transports or emergency student situations.

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Chief Business Officer
Lisa Bona


Lisa Bona is in her third year as the executive director of business operations and strategy for the Division of Student Affairs in 2019-20. She assumed her current role in April 2017 after spending three and a half years as associate director of student financial services at Emory University in Atlanta.

Bona’s team in Student Affairs Business Operations (SABO) provides support to all Student Affairs departments through accounting services, financial reporting, personnel guidance and oversight of integrated financial and assessment strategies resulting in efficient resource utilization, effective planning and processes that create quality and continuous improvement of programs and services. SABO was named Student Affairs Team of the Year for 2019 after successfully juggling the financial impact of several departments moving to Finance and Operations and also implementing value mapping, which ties departmental work into the overall strategic plan of the division.

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Corporate and Community Engagement Director
Kryssa Cooper


Kryssa Cooper serves as the director of corporate and community engagement within Clemson University's Division of Student Affairs. After spending more than a year as the director of sponsorships for Student Affairs, she assumed her current position in October 2019. In this role, she continues to work with Clemson Sports & Campus Marketing as the relationship manager with an expanded responsibility to include cultivating and stewarding other corporate and community partners for Student Affairs.

Cooper was a member of the President’s Leadership Institute (PLI) cohort in 2020-21. Under her watch, Student Affairs has enjoyed unprecedented growth in sponsorship revenue. She helped secure more than $250,000 in both the 2019 and 2020 fiscal years and manages a portfolio of more than 25 corporate partners. The sponsorship revenue earned is distributed to various programs within Student Affairs to support the division’s core themes of health, safety and wellness, student learning, inclusive excellence and staff experience. Programs such as the Career Center Clothes Closet, JCPenney Suit Up event, Tigerama, Celebrate Safely, The Big Event and many others and student organizations have benefitted from this revenue source.

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Communications Director
Philip Sikes


Philip Sikes serves as communications director for Clemson University’s Division of Student Affairs, but his affiliation with the University dates to the fall of 1998 when he enrolled as an undergraduate. Sikes is the chief communications strategist for the vice president’s office and all departments within Student Affairs, as part of the University Relations strategic communications team.

Sikes was an associate athletic communications director at Clemson from 2004-17. During that time, he served as the primary communications representative for the men’s basketball program. He planned and executed promotional material for multiple audiences, while also strategizing and maintaining content for the program’s social media platforms. In 2013, his men’s basketball media guide was voted No. 1 in the nation by the College Sports Information Directors of America. He was the 2007 Bob Bradley Award recipient for outstanding contributions to the basketball program.

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