Lee News

Chan Named New LEAP Director, 2019-20 Scholars Announced


Dr. Roy Y. Chan has been named the new director of Lee University LEAP, a federally-funded TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) program designed to aid in student success.

LEAP (Learn, Engage, and Achieve Program) started in 2015 when the university was awarded a five-year grant of $1.1 million by the U.S. Department of Education. Lee also contributes over $200,000 per year of institutional funds to the program that serves 140 first-generation or underrepresented students each year who meet the eligibility criteria. The program currently provides individual success coaching, peer mentors, direct student aid, financial aid counseling, financial literacy education, cultural and academic enrichment opportunities, and other personalized services according to individual students’ needs.

Roy Chan
Dr. Roy Y. Chan

“LEAP seeks to equip, enrich, and empower our students to be responsible Christian citizens within their communities by offering tools, resources, and activities that support their emotional, intellectual, physical, and social well-being at Lee University,” said Chan. “As the only TRIO SSS program in the State of Tennessee who is part of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU), LEAP takes pride in serving a diverse, vibrant population of students from all walks of life.”

As an advocate for diversity and inclusion, Chan is passionate about helping students identify their strengths and empowering them for lifelong success. Prior to joining the staff at Lee, Chan served as the special projects coordinator in the 21st Century Scholars Program at Indiana University Bloomington, the largest non-TRIO student support service in the United States. In this role he led the strategy, development, and implementation of the program's communications and advocacy work for over 3,000 low-income students.

Chan holds a Doctor of Philosophy in education policy studies from Indiana University Bloomington, a Master of Arts in higher education administration from Boston College, a Master of Education in comparative education from The University of Hong Kong, and a Bachelor of Arts in criminology, law and society from the University of California, Irvine.

Chan replaces Dr. Suzanne Holt, founding director of LEAP and former director of Global Perspectives, who has retired from Lee after more than 30 years of service.

This year, more than 500 incoming Lee freshmen were invited to apply for the LEAP program.

“The 21 LEAP students chosen, all who are first-generation, join a select group of talented individuals from more than 25 states across the nation,” said Chan.

The incoming LEAP Class of 2023 cohort include Noelle Allgood of Nashville, Tennessee; Marquis Bush of Elizabethton, Tennessee; Hunter Byram of Jacksonville, Florida; Torrey Cook of Nolensville, Tennessee; Madelon Dill of Cleveland, Tennessee; Michael Dillinger of Maryville, Tennessee; Katherine Early of Corryton, Tennessee; Sara Ford of Inwood, Wyoming; Jenna Franklin of Vancleave, Mississippi; Faithlyn Hall of Nashville, Tennessee; Stephanie Larche of Cleveland, Tennessee; Viktoriya Marushka of Cleveland, Tennessee; Cassandra Olson of Bristol, Tennessee; Grace Patterson of Old Hickory, Tennessee; Jalyn Poynter of Beaver Dam, Kentucky; Nicole Robles of Lawrenceville, Georgia; Carrie Snyder of Charleston, Tennessee; Adrienne Williams of South Point, Ohio; McKenzie Willis of Spring City, Tennessee; Tabitha Wilson of Kissimmee, Florida; and Kara Yoder of Arthur, Illinois.

For more information about LEAP, visit site.

The Federal TRIO Programs include eight federal outreach and student services programs designed to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. The programs provide grants to institutions of higher education, public and private agencies, and various organizations.

For more information about TRIO Programs, visit site.

LEAP Class of 2023
LEAP Class of 2023

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