Vice President of Student Affairs candidate plans to prioritize involvement


Mingda Wu

Vice President of Student Affairs candidate Brian Fisher spoke Monday about how how he will take necessary steps to help students succeed.

By Abby Byer

DeKALB — The search for NIU’s next Vice President of Student Affairs continues with candidate Brian Fisher. 

Fisher currently serves as the Associate Vice President of Student Engagement at Florida Gulf Coast University. 

He received his collegiate degrees from Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. Fisher later received a bachelor of arts in political science cum laude in 1993 and a master of science in higher education in 1995.

A public forum with Fisher was held from 3 to 4 p.m. Monday in Altgeld Hall. 

Fisher answered questions from students, staff and other members of the community who were present both in person and via Facebook Live. 

He has many plans for NIU.

“Creating a safe and inclusive environment is very important to me,” Fisher said. “Transactional and destination environments are something I have a lot of experience with. Prioritizing places where students can interact rather than looking at it as a transactional environment is necessary for students.”

Fisher prioritizes student involvement.

“My dream was if a student wants to get involved with a club or organization, that they can just click on an app on their phone and find everything they need,” Fisher said. “We created that at FGCU and in a matter of time went from 50,000 clicks to 250,000. We want it to be as easy as possible for students to get involved. It doesn’t matter where a student gets involved, it’s about how they do.”

Fisher wants to give students the help they need to be successful.

“I like to use the ladder versus filter technique,” Fisher said. “The ladder shows that a college degree is not easy. We need to help students climb rather than filter them out when they aren’t finishing fast or in the expected amount of time. Colleges often filter students, where if they don’t graduate in a set time we often look past them. The more we can utilize the ladder the better.” 

Fisher’s priority would be to make students feel connected to one another on campus — as though NIU were their second home. 

“I want students to find their homes within their homes and make sure they feel a part of our community,” Fisher said.