Dr. Dwight J. Fennell is a native of Miami, Florida, where he graduated Miami Carol City Senior High School. Following graduation he immediately enrolled in Saint Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he completed the baccalaureate degree in history and government. He pursued and completed the Master of Arts Degree in History at Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia and a second Master of Science degree in Education at Florida International University in Miami, Florida. He received the Education Specialist and Doctor of Philosophy Degrees from Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. He has completed post-doctoral work in Educational Leadership with the American Council on Education as an ACE Fellow at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.
Dr. Fennell began his professional career in higher education at Florida International University where he worked in various capacities including community service initiatives, adult and continuing education and as assistant director of the college’s honors program. He also worked at Florida Atlantic University as Director of the Student Retention Program. After leaving the State University System of Florida, Dr. Fennell taught at Morris Brown College in Atlanta, Georgia, and later at Saint Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina (his alma mater). While at Saint Augustine’s College, he became a tenured associate professor of history and later Vice President for Academic Affairs, a position he held for seven of the eleven years he spent at the institution.
Dr. Fennell relocated to Dallas in 1998 to become Provost of Paul Quinn College with the responsibilities of both Academic Affairs and Student Affairs. He was appointed Interim President of the college in September 2001 and in May 2002, he received the unanimous vote of the Board of Trustees to become the 32nd President of Paul Quinn College. During his tenure as president, the college experienced increased enrollments, increased student retention, enhanced community collaborations, increased funding of student scholarships, renovations to the campus buildings and increase in the college’s endowment.
Dr. Fennell served as Executive Director of Project Development at The Potter’s House Incorporated with the ministry of Bishop T.D. Jakes for two years. He held the overall responsibilities for design, development and construction of Capella Park, a residential subdivision featuring more than 1,000 single-family homes. He also had responsibility for the administrative oversight of Clay Academy, a private, Christian college preparatory school. Dr. Fennell led the preparatory school to accreditation, scholarship funding, enrollment and grade level growth.
Dr. Fennell more recently served as Vice President for Academic Affairs at Texas College and now becomes the President of the College.
Dr. Fennell is married to Angelia and they have one son, Dwight, Jr.