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Dean of Student Life

Dr. Sentwali Bakari

Dr. Sentwali Bakari has over twenty-five years of professional experience in higher education, which includes a Ph.D. from the University of Northern Colorado. Dr. Bakari is student centered, and he is an advocate for holistic education and inclusive excellence. He has worked with students in diverse environments including coaching youth basketball in Copenhagen, Denmark. Dr. Bakari encourages students to pursue their dreams and aspirations with vigilance while developing a global consciousness. He enjoys outdoor jazz, salsa, and R & B concerts and is a novice photographer.

Dr. Bakari, known by many as Sentwali, is the Dean of Students (Chief Student Affairs Officer) at Drake University and provides leadership and management for the Division of Student Life. Sentwali received the 2013 International Education Administrators Fulbright award to the United Kingdom.

Sentwali has served as a co-leader for Travel Seminars with Drake University students. He travelled to Egypt in May of 2011, to Egypt and Turkey May of 2013, and to Egypt and Turkey in May 2014. Sentwali has also traveled with students in Egypt to Giza, Cairo, Alexandra, Luxor, Edfu, and Aswan. While in Turkey, Sentwali traveled with students to Istanbul, Ankara, Cappadocia, and Bursa.

In 2012, Sentwali was invited to Israel by the Consulate General Office of Israel to the Midwest and the Israelis Foreign Ministry Affairs to participate in a one-week academic delegation with faculty representing diverse institutions in the United States.

Sentwali is the Past President of the Iowa Student Personnel Association and received the Iowa Student Personnel Association 2009 Distinguish Service Award. In 2010, Sentwali received the Distinguished Multicultural Alumni Award from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, and is a graduate from the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute. He is a steering committee member for the Brotherto-Brother African American male leadership initiative at Drake University, and serves as a Co-Lead Facilitator for the national/international LeaderShape Institute.

Sentwali served on the NASPA IV East Regional Conference Planning Committee in 2004, 2005, and 2013, and served on the NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators) IV East Advisory Board as the state of Iowa Membership Coordinator from 2008-2011. Sentwali also presented at the 2011 and 2012 NASPA national conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Phoenix, Arizona, and at the NASPA IV East 2010, Regional Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota.