Rev. Faithe Beam will be the next Vice President for Student Life and Christian Mission at Campbell University, President J. Bradley Creed announced today. The current Vice President for Spiritual Life will succeed Dr. Dennis Bazemore, who announced his retirement after more than 18 years in the cabinet.
In her role, Beam will oversee the student experience at Campbell, from extra-curricular activities and event planning to Fraternity and Sorority Life, Spiritual Life and student success programs. Beam, who first joined Campbell’s staff in 2002 as director of student services for the Divinity School, said having the right people in place dedicated to building a community that “supports and encourages students in genuine ways” is important.
“I believe students most often remember the people who make up their Campbell experience — friends, faculty, staff and peers,” she said. “They remember the people who have invested in them and hold on to experiences they shared with them.”
Also important is building a student experience that expresses Campbell’s Christian mission and purpose, said Beam, who earned her Master of Divinity degree from Campbell in 2003. She said that mission and purpose is most often found in the relationships and community formed during a student’s four years in college.
“It is the intangible quality that embodies the student experience. It shows up in how we care for and support one another. It shows up in how we wrestle with deep questions and respond to challenges and crises,” Beam said.
“It shows up as students discern their vocation and calling and how they live into their purpose. It shows up in our commitment to serve and make a difference in our communities. And while it looks different for every student, there is freedom to engage the life of faith as part of their college experience. The mission lives and breathes in our community as we share the goodness and grace of God together.”
Beam earned a degree in music education from Appalachian State University and served as minister of music and education at Zion Baptist Church in Shelby, North Carolina, before coming to Campbell. The daughter of a pastor, Beam said one of her greatest joys since coming to Campbell has been walking alongside students as they discover how God is present and at work in their lives.
In 2007, Beam was named campus minister at Campbell. In that role, she counseled students, planned freshman Connections seminars, led various ministries on campus and made mission and outreach opportunities accessible for all students and staff. Her passion for service led Beam to introduce the Inasmuch Day of Service to Campbell and other community engagement initiatives, such as the Community Christmas Store, Campus Kitchen, Community Garden and Campus Pantry and Ministry House, to name a few.
Beam also began Campbell traditions such as Freshman Worship in Butler Chapel, Lenten worship each spring and intentional focus on Advent each Christmas. She has guided Campbell through a shift in mission trips, sending students to the eastern seaboard and to cities across the country.
“There is no more important function and leadership role at Campbell than providing a vision and guidance to the student experience,” said President J. Bradley Creed. “It’s critical that each and every student who comes to Campbell — regardless of campus location — feels a sense of connection in our community.
“I can think of no one better prepared to lead Campbell’s Student Life program than Rev. Faithe Beam. I am deeply grateful that she has answered this call to lead, and I am equally grateful for the outstanding leadership and commitment of Dr. Dennis Bazemore to Campbell’s student body for the last 18 years. We will miss his big smile, laughter and involvement in every aspect of Campbell University.”
For the entirety of her Campbell career, Beam has worked under the guidance of Bazemore, who in October announced his retirement effective May 31. During Bazemore’s 18-plus year tenure, he oversaw growth in several Student Life departments, from Residence Life and the addition of several new residence halls to the addition of Greek fraternities and sororities in 2012. His office grew and improved counseling services and Title IX services and made Campbell one of the safest campuses in the nation.
Bazemore also helped usher in the Oscar N. Harris Student Union, an important piece for improved student life on campus, and after the COVID-19 pandemic hit, he led Campbell’s Health & Safety Committee to set safety guidelines and ensure a safe and careful return to in-person learning.
A native of Ahoskie, North Carolina, Bazemore earned a degree in religion from Campbell in 1977 before receiving his Master of Divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and his Doctor of Ministry from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“I am grateful to Dr. Bazemore for his strong and steady leadership,” Beam said. “He is a loyal steward of the Campbell experience in his care and commitment to students. He exemplifies the mission of Campbell in who he is and how he has served faithfully through his own purpose and calling.”
Bazemore said he worked across the hall from Beam for the first 14 years of their working relationship, and he is certain she is the right choice to lead Campbell Student Life in the coming years.
“She has a deep love for students, she is well respected by our student body and she has grown in her role,” Bazemore said. “She is well equipped in so many ways to provide leadership in Student Life for years to come, and I am excited for her appointment as the next vice president.”
When looking back on her own student experience Beam said what she remembers most are “the moments of serendipity shared with friends — sledding after a fresh snow or late night meals.” On her first Sunday at college, she met the man who would become her husband.
Tom Beam is the disaster relief coordinator for Baptists on Mission. Faithe and Tom have one son, Patrick. When she is not on campus, Faithe loves spending time with her family, reading, watching her son play hockey and traveling.