Scott Harrison

Scott Harrison

Associate Vice President for Administration

Old Dominion University

Norfolk, VA USA

Doing what you love and enjoying getting up each morning and going to work is so much more rewarding over a 30+ year career than having to put up with a work environment you dread with a larger paycheck.


My road in life took a while to figure out.
Thought I was going to own a business, so I got an undergraduate degree in business with a concentration in management.
Realized it was not the business so much as the people in the business that was of interest to me. Picked up an undergraduate degree in psychology.
Realized there was a graduate degree in industrial / organizational (I / O) psychology, combining how people function effectively in a business environment.
While obtaining my master's degree in I / O psychology, I was a graduate assistant in the Dean of Students office and fell in love with higher education administration.
Had the good fortune to get a full-time job in the Student Activities Office and started working on my Ph.D. in higher education administration.
I had amazing mentors and supervisors who saw and encouraged my talents. Having a hobby of messing with technology, I had the opportunity to be selected as the Director of IT for Student Affairs.
Additional responsibilities were added to my portfolio and I eventually became the Assistant Dean for Administration.
Ultimately my position was expanded in responsibilities and I am now the Associate Vice President for Administration in Student Engagement & Enrollment Services.


Associate Vice President for Administration

Oversee administrative units in Student Engagement & Enrollment Services.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Accomplishing Goals

Day to Day

A typical day might involve coding and running custom reports, auditing purchase card records, processing purchases, meeting with direct reports, attending or leading committee meetings, and keeping up with dozens of emails.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for college students

If you are an undergraduate student, get a job on campus in an administrative or academic office and make connections with faculty and administrators. Volunteer in areas of your interest. Volunteer to assist faculty with research that you find of interest. The people you work with will be your gateway to your future. Take very opportunity to learn and take the initiative to teach yourself valuable skills. Never give up—keep learning and always be reliable in everything you do.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:


The Noise I Shed

From Peers:

"You'll never make much money in higher education."

Challenges I Overcame

First-Generation College Student