New OSL director enjoys working with students

Erin Lewis is looking forward to implementing new programs in her new job as director of the Office of Student Life (OSL). She has been observing the events on campus and learning about student organizations. Lewis knew she was in the right place at Richland when she interviewed for the job. 

“When I did my interview, I landed on campus and I was, like wow, this feels like home,” Lewis said. “And I still stand by that; Wonderful campus, great people.”  

She comes to Richland from San Jacinto College in Houston where she ran the student engagement program. Lewis coordinated student organizations, campus events, the food pantry and the game room. She was also a Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention (SHARP) instructor and led programs in self-defense. 

Before working at San Jacinto College, Lewis worked in Student Involvement and the Leadership Center at Boise State University in Idaho. 

Originally from Fayetteville, Ark., and now living in Richardson, she said she is glad to be in the Dallas area in order to be closer to family. 

Lewis said she would like to create and implement new programs at Richland that would bring awareness to the OSL and do more fun things with students. 

“I’d like to try to help them continue to be engaged in their process of being a college students on campus,” she said. “We are looking at beefing up or making some of our current programs more robust. We’re trying to extend those times out so instead of just 12 to 1 p.m., it’s 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.,” Lewis said. “We’re trying to extend the time periods, add some extra food elements and bring in a level of entertainment, giving students more time to come out to our events.” 

Lewis has a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Master of Education in Higher Education, both from the University of Arkansas. She would like to get her doctorate in education and continue to work on a college campus. 

“I’ve found where I like to be, and I love working with students so just continuing to get another degree, that’s what I see myself doing,” she said. “We also have a dual credit/early college students here on campus. I love the vibrancy of being on a campus and helping students and helping them get hooked up with the correct resources or finding out who they are. That brings me joy.” 

Lewis said what really impresses her about the campus is that everyone has been friendly and the campus is gorgeous. 

“Everyone has made me feel welcome, posted signs or left me little Richland gifts,” she said. 

As far as the animal life on campus, Lewis is used to ducks and geese. “I had those at Boise State,” Lewis said. “I am not shocked at all. I know what to do. The lake is gorgeous. You can walk out the front door and see ducks.”