Students can always come to Houston:
- with any question, concern or issue they have related to any program or department within DSA
- if they have ideas about how to improve life for students on campus
- if they are interested in graduate study or a career in higher education and/or student affairs
- for advice on how to make the most of their college experience
- to check out the cool view from his office windows
- Ideas about ways to enhance student engagement, learning, and governance
Houston has been Grinnell VPSA since spring 2008, having been previously at Lewis & Clark College, Puget Sound, Iowa State, WWU, UCSB, and the University of Hartford. He is a native of Santa Fe, NM. He is responsible for the staff, programs, budgets, and assessment for the areas that comprise the Division of Student Affairs: Residence Life & New Student Orientation, Academic Advising (including Disability Services), International Student Affairs; Campus Safety & Security; Campus Center Operations & Student Activities (including JRC, Harris, Craft Workshop); and Student Health and Counseling Services. Over the past 29 years he has led and worked in the following areas of college student affairs: counseling & health services; substance abuse prevention; suicide and self-harming behaviors prevention; admissions; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and ally (lgbtqa) student services; women's center; student legal services; multicultural affairs; service learning; student activities, unions and centers; assessment and retention; residence life; religious and spiritual life; learning skills; career services; orientation; judicial affairs; campus safety and crisis management; academic advising; international students; career development; outdoor programs; and financial aid. He is very active regionally and nationally in NASPA (Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education) and nationally in ACPA (College Student Educators International). In 2011 he was the director/lead faculty for the NASPA Aspiring Senior Student Affair Office Institute. He is a frequently invited speaker at conferences and at schools and colleges and has taught at both UCSB and Drake University (where he is currently an adjunct graduate faculty member). He has been cited in numerous publications (e.g., New York Times, Chronicle of Higher Education, Seattle Times, USA Today); is published in three books: Linking Theory to Practice: Case Studies with College Students (2000), The Advocate College Guide (2006) and Maybe I Should . . . : Case Studies on Ethics for Student Affairs Professionals (2009) and is cited in the recent book The iConnected Parent.
Recently, Houston has been featured in a variety of books, newspaper and magazine articles (print and on-line) about college students, their families, and student life on the college campus. Here are a few examples:
He lives in Grinnell with his family: Kimberly, Fen, and Allie (who is a student at Earlham College).