Posted on May 18, 2022 · Posted in Academic News, General, News, Press Release

(Burbank, IL) St. Laurence High School is excited to welcome Vernon Cheeks as the school’s new Dean of Student Engagement.

Dean Cheeks joins St. Laurence after three years as Dean of Students at his alma mater, Urban Prep Bronzeville Charter Academy. At Urban Prep, he placed an emphasis on building relationships with students in order to help them reach their potential. In his role, Dean Cheeks also helped facilitate a safe and supportive environment where all students could develop the academic, social and emotional skills needed to become engaged citizens.

Among Dean Cheeks’ main responsibilities as Dean of Student Engagement is working with and developing relationships with students on a daily basis. Other areas of focus will be helping students find opportunities to be involved in extracurricular activities and developing relationships with local business and trades to cultivate opportunities for students through the school’s Career Pathway Programs.

“Dean Cheeks will be an outstanding addition to our revamped Student Services team,” said St. Laurence Principal Kristy Kane. “On top of his proven track record in a similar role, it was evident throughout the interview process that Vernon truly believed in our mission’s commitment to the development of the whole student. He has hit the ground running and is already creating strong relationships with our students.”

Dean Cheeks earned his Masters of Science in Physical Education from Indiana State University in 2018. In addition to his studies, he served as the school’s Student Government Association President. He has also held football coaching positions at the high school and collegiate levels, and will assume a role as an assistant coach with the St. Laurence football team.

“I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity to be a guide for the fine students of St. Laurence,” said Cheeks. “Throughout my career, I have learned how to connect with people of all backgrounds and experiences, and I think this will make me successful as Dean of Student Engagement. The students and staff have welcomed me with open arms and I am excited to be a part of the St. Laurence family.”