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Makena Stewart, Ed.D.

Assistant Professor of Practice, ELPHD, Faculty Scholar, Belk Center


Makena Stewart, Ed.D., served as the Vice President of Strategic Excellence at South Piedmont Community College. Over the last two decades Makena has served in various administrative and community college leadership roles in student services, academic affairs, and research and planning. Her previous administrative appointments include serving as the Dean of Student Development, Associate Vice President of Student Success and Interim Chief Academic Officer and Vice President of Student Services.

Makena has extensive experience in student success and institutional effectiveness, having served on multiple accreditation committees, leading in the development of Quality Enhancement Plans, and serving as the institutional lead for NC Guided Pathways. Her interests include institutional effectiveness, organizational culture, program evaluation and holistic wraparound services for credit and non-credit pathways. Her work has been published in the North Carolina Community College Journal of Teaching Innovation.

Makena earned her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and her Master of Science in Education in Counseling from Old Dominion University. Stewart has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Virginia.


  • Bellwether Best in Showcase, Instructional Programs and Services (South Piedmont Community College), 2023
  • Bellwether Best in Showcase, Planning Governance, and Finance (South Piedmont Community College), 2022
  • Fulbright Scholar International Education Administrator (2021)
  • South Piedmont Community College Staff of the Year (2021)
  • South Piedmont Community College Administrator of the Year (2012)