New Staff Profile: Laurie Van Pelt

Laurie Van Pelt. Photo by Sarah Riley Jicka.

Laurie Van Pelt is the new Director of Instructional Technology at Jackson Prep, although she is not new to the Prep family. Ms. Van Pelt has three children currently attending Prep  and one, Ben, who has graduated from Prep.

6th grader Max, 8th grader Madie, and 12th grader Kacie are all very involved with the Prep community whether it be academically or extracurricularly, leading to frequent sightings of Ms. Van Pelt.

Madie and Kacie both play volleyball for Prep, and the Van Pelts are very involved in the Jackson CrossFit community. Ms. Van Pelt says her hobby is supporting her four kids in all of their activities.

Laurie Armitstead Van Pelt was born in Orange, California, and attended Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California. Though a California native, she has also lived in Boston, Massachusetts, England, and Louisville, Kentucky. The Van Pelts lived in England while Miles Van Pelt, her husband, finished his PhD degree there.

Dr. Van Pelt is a professor and academic dean at Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson.

Ms. Van Pelt first learned about the job opening after having a casual conversation in the junior high office with Laura Bishop, the Head of IT at Prep. Prior to coming to Prep, she was a computer program consultant for higher education institutions, which enabled her to work with smaller colleges like Olin College of Engineering and Merrimack College. She has scaled down her consultant work since coming to Prep.

When asked if there was a difference between being a parent and a faculty member at Prep, Ms. Van Pelt answered that working at Prep is truly part of a family atmosphere.