Hesston College welcomes new members of leadership team

2023-24 Hesston College Administrative Council group photo

Hesston College Administrative Council, back row: Rachel Swartzendruber Miller, Joseph A. Manickam, Grant Myers. Front row: Caleb Loss, Michael Smalley, Ross Peterson-Veatch.

Hesston College welcomed three new vice presidents to its Administrative Council leadership team over the summer in the lead up to the 2023-24 year: Caleb Loss, Ross Peterson-Veatch and Michael Smalley.

“With this group, there is clearly a sense of renewed energy toward the future of the institution,” said President Joseph A. Manickam. “They come in with a freshness of ideas, and also hope for what they see here. All of our new members are joining us because they believe in the mission of this college and the sense of hope it brings for the world in which we are sending our students.”

Stepping into the role of vice president of finance and auxiliary services is Caleb Loss. He most recently served as associate vice president of finance and operations at Wichita (Kan.) State University’s NIAR (National Institute for Aviation Research) program. Previously, he served as the Procurement Agent for the Boeing 787 project at Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita.

Loss brings direct experience with management and procedures that will serve him well in his role at Hesston College, including directing accounting procedures, contracts and proposals, human resources, program management, financial reporting and budget forecasting. He earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in business administration from Wichita State University.

“The heart of the Hesston College community is evident in its vision,” says Loss. “The idea of leading business operations that support the college’s efforts to accomplish its vision through its everyday work is what brought me to Hesston. After just a few weeks, I am finding that the community is more like a family than just a group of co-workers. Because of that, I am excited for the opportunity to work together to find creative ways to accomplish the college’s vision.”

Dr. Ross Peterson-Veatch assumed the role of vice president of academics. Peterson-Veatch previously held several academic roles at other small, faith-based colleges. He served as academic dean and associate vice president for academics and student affairs at Goshen (Ind.) College, and vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college at Southwestern College (Winfield, Kan.).

The experience Peterson-Veatch brings to Hesston College includes forging dual degree program partnerships among higher education institutions, successfully leading assurance reviews with the Higher Learning Commission accrediting agency and partnering with faculty to develop effective academic systems. He earned a Ph.D. in folklore with a minor in Spanish from Indiana University (Bloomington), as well as a master’s degree from Indiana University and an undergraduate degree from Earlham College (Richmond, Ind.).

“I am excited to work at Hesston College, a college with tight focus on developing student leadership,” Peterson-Veatch says. “I believe that in addition to traditional academics, the most important thing we can provide for students is an education for leadership. Hesston has been demonstrating excellence in this area for decades and it is an honor for me to be able to be a part of it.”

Michael Smalley accepted the role of vice president of student life. No stranger to Hesston College, Smalley served in various roles at Hesston since 2011, most recently as women’s basketball head coach for the last three years. His other roles with the college included resident director, admissions counselor and interim dean of admissions.
With both a master’s and bachelor’s degree in social work from Wichita State University and experience in a mental health setting, Smalley brings to the role an awareness of working with students in a wholesome, trauma-informed manner. Smalley is also a graduate of Hesston College.

“I started as an employee of Hesston College 12 years ago because I felt a deep gratitude for how I was served by the college when I was a student here,” explains Smalley. “My commitment to students in my time here has been to serve them in a way they deserve so that they hopefully remember their college experience in a positive way like I do. I’m excited to jump deeper into the student experience and see where this year takes us.”

The newest leaders at Hesston College join President Manickam on the Administrative Council along with Dr. Rachel Swartzendruber Miller, vice president of advancement, and Grant Myers, vice president of enrollment management.