Dr. Ernest E. Jeffries
Dr. Ernest Jeffries serves as the Vice President of Student Engagement. As the chief student affairs officer, Dr. Jeffries provides leadership to the Division of Student Engagement which includes the areas of Residence Life & Housing, Community Standards & Title IX, Student Activities, First-Year Experience & Student Support, Public Safety & Security, Program for the Exceptionally Gifted (PEG), Health and Counseling Services, Dining Services, and Athletics.
Dr. Ernest E. Jeffries started his career at the University of Tennessee as Residence Hall Director. He then served as Assistant to the Vice Chancellor for Student Development and Director of Minority Affairs at Western Carolina University. Following that, he did a 20-year tenure at Davidson College during which he held various roles and titles including Assistant/Associate Dean of Student Life; Chief Judicial Officer where he served in the Title IX process; and he created the framework for a multicultural affairs office and then served as Director of Multicultural Affairs from 1996 to 2011. Most recently in his role as Associate Dean, Jeffries was responsible for the administration of judicial affairs, multicultural affairs, academic access and disability resources, academic support, student retention programs, and technology resources.
His professional affiliations include the Southern Association of College Student Affairs, the Association on Higher Education and Disability, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, the Association of Student Conduct Administrators, and the Phi Mu Alpha and Alpha Phi Alpha fraternities.
D.Min., United Theological Seminary
M.Div, Hood Theological Seminary
M.Ed., University of South Carolina
B.A., University of South Carolina
Strengths Finders Talent Themes
Dr. Learie C. Nurse
Dr. Nurse is a native of Barbados and started his professional career in the hospitality industry after graduating from college with a degree in Food and Beverage Operations. Upon leaving the hospitality industry, Dr. Nurse returned to his alma mater as a lecturer at the Barbados Community College where he taught the fundamentals of culinary arts. In 2000 he migrated to the United States of America to further his education and gained a Bachelor’s degree at the New England Culinary Institute (NECI) in Essex Junction, Vermont, in Food and Beverage Management. In 2006 while employed as a Retail Operations Manager with University Dining Services (Sodexo) at The University of Vermont (UVM), he earned a Masters of Education in Interdisciplinary Studies, with an interest in student affairs and higher education; thus becoming the first NECI grad to earn an advanced masters degree. Upon completion of the Masters degree, he accepted a position at the State University of New York (SUNY), Plattsburgh as an Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) Counselor, providing academic support, guidance and access for first generation college students.
Upon finishing his tenure at SUNY Plattsburgh, he returned to UVM and served as a Residence Director in the department of Residence Life while pursuing his doctorate. During his tenure in the department, he was promoted to an Assistant Director and Acting Associate Director for Residential Education. In this role, he supervised both graduate and paraprofessionals and worked to create a safe and welcoming environment for students in the areas of diversity, leadership development, programming and student adjudication processes. In 2011 Dr. Nurse received his doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Vermont with his research foci on he differences between Black diaspora students and their social mobility in higher education at predominantly white institutions. Dr. Nurse has a passion and a deep interest for supporting students from marginalized identities and helping them to find their sense of belonging in a college environment. In addition to higher education, Dr. Nurse has a deep passion for music and has served as a Worship & Arts co-director.
In 2015, Dr. Nurse served as the Dean of Students at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado where he provided general oversight, supervision, leadership, strategic planning, programs and vision of the functional areas of the division of student affairs. While serving as Dean, he revamped the first year orientation process, introduced special interest housing and living and learning communities as a great retention tool and oversaw the CARE team amongst other initiatives.
Most recently Dr. Nurse served as the Associate Dean of Students at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. In that role he created a formalized framework for adjudicating student conduct and academic integrity. In addition to student conduct, he worked to connect students who exhibited psychological concerns with accessibility resources and services and academic affairs.
He is a member of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) and the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) and has presented at the ACPA regional and national conference and the Tri- State consortium conference. His professional studies of interest include Caribbean students’ access to higher education, differences of Black diaspora college students at white institutions, diversity retention efforts and race relations.
Dr. Nurse is an alumnus of the Social Justice Training Institute, a certified Intercultural Development Inventory facilitator, a certified Restorative Practices Trainer and a member of the Pi Gammu Mu Honors Society. He has a strong emphasis and commitment to social justice and diversity work and is intentional about creating socially just environments where all voices matter. His philosophy in life is to advocate and provide a holistic and caring environment for students to reach their fullest potential.
He is married to Dr. Takiyah Nurse and they have two young sons.
Mary Barker serves as Executive Assistant to the Vice President of Student Engagement, Dr. Ernest Jeffries. Ms. Barker supplies executive level support to Dr. Jeffries as well as support for special programs originating from the Office of Student Engagement, including Orientation, Family Weekend and Commencement. She is also a co-advisor to the Junior Class.
Ms. Barker’s background involves work in early childhood education as well children’s services in libraries. She applies strong customer skills in putting students first and has been with Mary Baldwin University since 2016, working in Admissions before transferring to Student Engagement.
B.S. James Madison University
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes
Joy Brittain, Ed.D
Reverend Dr. Joy Brittain is the Director of First-Year Experience and Student Support. She works with all first-year students to provide support and resources for a successful transition to college. In her role, Dr. Brittain oversees New Student Days, Fall Orientation, and Family Weekend. Joy also supervises the RISE Program, a program for first-year students who do not belong to any other affinity group. She is part of the Student Support Team, The Behavioral Intervention Team and collaborates with the “I’m First” Faculty/Staff gathering to assist first-generation students in completing a college education. She is a lecturer for the introduction to college (MBU 101) course and teaches the MBU 105 course.
Joy started her professional educational career as a math and science teacher in the Peace Corps (Nepal). She continued her journey working for several programs helping students receive their GED or build up their skills to enter college. Joy used her passion for math and science teaching at several high schools for the learning disabled. Joy had the opportunity to be part of the National TRIO Programs at California Lutheran University as the Upward Bound Math and Science Director. During her ten-year tenure, she built the program to be one of the best-practice programs in the country. She continued her time in TRIO as the Director for two TRIO programs at Pasadena City College and a coordinator for a scholarship program. She worked with faculty to pilot very successful flipped classrooms and utilize supplemental instruction for her high school students.
Joy’s previous position was as Executive Director of Early Outreach and Support Programs, overseeing 14 federal, state, and privately-funded programs serving over 7,000 students (college and pre-college). The programs assist low-income, first-generation, disabled, migrant, undocumented, and foster youth in finishing high school and completing their college education.
Coming from a low-income and first-generation background herself, Joy is married with two grown sons. She has a Bachelor’s degree from Lycoming College, a Master of Divinity degree from The Iliff School of Theology, and a Doctorate from California State University, Northridge.
She, Her, Hers
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes
Samuel Irons '18 MS '20
B.S. Mary Baldwin University
M.S. Mary Baldwin University
they, them, theirs
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes
Mrs. Sarah E. Martin is the Director of Residence Life and Housing. She is responsible for providing overall leadership for the residence life components of the department, the oversight of the delivery of all residential programs, as well as the business and housing operations parts of living on campus. She also serves as the primary departmental contact and resource for on-campus student crisis management and concerns. Mrs. Martin is also a lecturer for the introduction to college (MBU 101) course and a First Year student advisor. Additionally, Mrs. Martin assists in advising student groups, training student leaders, and collaborating with other offices on campus.
As a First Generation college student herself, Mrs. Martin believes that a student’s experience plays a vital role in that students success in college. She sparked her student engagement passion as an undergraduate student Resident Assistant at Shenandoah University, where she was also an Orientation Leader, SGA President, and held various other leadership roles that helped to engage the student body. She then went on to receive her Master’s degree at Indiana University of Pennsylvania where she was also an Assistant Residence Hall Director and continued her passion of helping students and student staff succeed. After completing her degree she went on to work at Marshall University as a Residence Hall Director, Marymount University as an Area Coordinator and Assistant Director of Residence Education, to then becoming the Director of Residence Life and Housing here at Mary Baldwin University.
M.A. Indiana University of Pennsylvania
B.S. Shenandoah University
she, her, hers
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes
Tracy Hiner started his career at the Highland Inn as a cook at the age of 15. He then joined the U.S. Navy for over six years as a culinary specialist first serving on the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis where he facilitated numerous food service events for the crew and visiting guests/dignitaries. After the Navy, Tracy came home to the valley as the Dining Services Manager/Executive Chef at The Inn at Old Virginia. Tracy was introduced to college dining at Bridgewater College and joined Mary Baldwin University in 2005 as the Assistant Director/Executive Chef. Tracy has served as Director of Dining Services since 2011. “I thrive on fostering a team and positive atmosphere that allows us to make students and guests happy through great food, service, and personal attention.”
B.A., Mary Baldwin University
A.A.S., Johnson & Wales University
Certified Food Management Professional (National Restaurant Association)
Certified in nutrition (National Restaurant Association)
Certified safe food manager (ANSI)
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes
- Self Assurance
Elaina Carson-Fuduloff brings a robust background in law enforcement, safety and security services, and personnel management to Mary Baldwin. She holds a B.S. in criminal justice, multiple security-related certifications, and has worked in the law enforcement and private security industry for more than 10 years. Her experience includes special training with the U.S. Army, working as a disaster action team member with the American Red Cross, and serving as the assistant director of transit security operations for the city of Phoenix, Arizona.
As MBU’s Director of Safety and Security Elaina oversees the Office of Campus Safety. She manages a team of highly trained security professionals, and is responsible for providing a safe and secure living, learning, and working environment for Mary Baldwin’s students, faculty, staff and visitors.
Nadia Kuley, Ph.D.
Erin Marley, an employee of Augusta Medical Group, provides acute, chronic and preventative healthcare services for the students of Mary Baldwin University. She has been practicing as a family nurse practitioner (FNP) since 2005 and joined the MBU family in 2015. She truly enjoys taking care of students and above all, loves witnessing the amazing transformation that takes place within students during their four years at Mary Baldwin.
BSN, University of Virginia
MSN, University of Virginia
She, Her, Hers
Strengthsfinders Talent Themes:
Thomas "Tom" Byrnes
Thomas Byrnes assumes the duties of director of athletics at Mary Baldwin University in August 2019.
Byrnes’ background encompasses NCAA Divisions I, II, and III and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), as well as committee work for the NCAA, Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), and others. He will provide leadership for all aspects of MBU’s Athletics Department including strategic planning, program and staff development, resource management, athletics and recreational activities, and ensuring compliance with NCAA, USA South, Title IX, and university policies.
He joins MBU during a time of strategic planning and expansion of athletics offerings and facilities, such as the recent addition of six men’s programs, including men’s soccer and baseball, as well as the construction of SMA Worth Field.
In his most recent position as director of athletics at Johnson & Wales University (JWU) Denver, Byrnes oversaw a 500% increase in student-athlete recruitment and stewarded the school’s NCAA D-III membership application, a multi-phase process. He also expanded JWU Denver’s coaching and training staff, launched men’s and women’s golf programs, and initiated a student-athlete advisory committee.
Prior to JWU Denver, he served as the first full-time commissioner for the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC), based in York, Pa. He recruited member institutions for CAC, enhanced membership services for their 21 championship sports, worked with NCAA D-III staff and commissioner organizations, and represented the conference both regionally and nationally.
Byrnes also has years of experience on the sports information and media relations side of collegiate athletics, serving as sports information director (SID) at California University of Pennsylvania, and, prior to that position, assistant executive director for media relations at the Pennsylvania-based Patriot League. He started his career as the first full-time SID at Franklin & Marshall College and then rose to the position of assistant director of athletics.
For more than 30 years, Byrnes has participated in soccer, basketball, baseball, and softball at the collegiate and scholastic level as an official. He also served on the CoSIDA Academic All-America Committee for 25 years.
Byrnes earned a BA in communications/journalism and an MS in organizational communication, both from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania. He and his wife, Coreena, have two children, Nathan and Lauren.
M.S., Shippensburg University
B.A., Shippensburg University