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President Emily W. Messer, Ed.D.

Dr. Messer


Empowering Student Success and Community Strength 

Dr. Emily W. Messer, Texas Wesleyan University's 21st President and its first female leader, is a distinguished educator, visionary and advocate for academic excellence. She brings a personal connection as a first-generation college student, igniting her dedication to student success and transformative experiences. With over two decades of experience in higher education, her leadership combines comprehensive expertise in university development, enrollment management and student life, marking a pivotal chapter for the University. 

Before her role at Texas Wesleyan, Dr. Messer served as Vice President for Advancement and Enrollment Management at Jacksonville State University in Alabama. Her tenure there witnessed remarkable successes, including record enrollments and philanthropic achievements. Dr. Messer's leadership propelled the university's fundraising efforts, notably contributing to the establishment of the Randy Owen Center for the Performing Arts. Before her time at JSU, she held significant leadership positions at Shorter University in Rome, Georgia, where she was Vice President of Enrollment Management and Assistant Dean of Students. 

Dr. Messer's presidency infuses Texas Wesleyan with renewed energy and innovation. Her strategic focus on student success, advancement and the development of new undergraduate and graduate programs is set to meet the dynamic needs of today's rapidly changing economic landscapes. Drawing from her extensive background in enrollment and retention management, she is well-equipped to build upon the successes of her predecessors. 

Driven by her commitment to higher education, Dr. Messer shapes an environment where students thrive academically and personally. Her emphasis on student success reflects her unwavering belief in individual potential, fostering a future where every achievement resonates across generations, strengthening families and communities. She is committed to shaping students into engaged, well-rounded individuals. 

Dr. Messer's tenure is marked by her profound commitment to inclusivity and her deep-rooted belief that education is a catalyst for change. Through her visionary leadership, she empowers students from diverse backgrounds to realize their full potential, just as she did herself. Her focus on student success and experience is a testament to her belief in the enduring impact of education, both for individuals and the communities they serve. 

With Dr. Emily W. Messer leading the way, Texas Wesleyan University enters a new era marked by boundless possibilities and transformative experiences. Her first-hand understanding of the transformative power of education, combined with her strategic vision for student success and experience, positions the University to continue its legacy of excellence while propelling students toward a future of limitless potential. Under her guidance, Texas Wesleyan is poised to foster growth, ignite forward momentum, and redefine the boundaries of what students can achieve. 

Dr. Messer knows the importance families play in the lives of each person. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, reading and outdoor activities. She and her husband, Chris, have two daughters.