Santhana Naidu Named Vice President for Communications & Marketing

Tuesday, May 05, 2020
Santhana Naidu

Santhana Naidu brings significant higher education and industry experience as vice president for communications and marketing. He had been associate vice president and chief marketing officer at Indiana State University.

Success-proven higher education marketing and communications professional Santhana Naidu has been named vice president for communications and marketing at Rose-Hulman. This appointment comes after a nationwide search, which attracted candidates from higher education, businesses, and non-profit organizations throughout the country.

Since starting May 4, Naidu is providing counsel and support to President Robert A. Coons, other administrators and the campus community about external and internal communications matters, crisis communications, and best ways to market Rose-Hulman to achieve its strategic initiatives, especially those involving student recruitment, institutional advancement, and alumni relations.

“Santhana brings significant communications and marketing experience, both from industry and more recently the higher education sector. Strategic communications and marketing leadership and expertise have been and will continue to be critically important to us on a local, state, regional, and national level. Santhana comes uniquely prepared to assist us in our communications and marketing efforts,” Coons says.

For the past seven years, Naidu has served as associate vice president and chief marketing officer at Indiana State University and formerly was the university’s director of web services for two years. He helped ISU achieve success in increasing its brand awareness and perception and leveraging the brand to support enrollment and advancement.

Because of those successes, Naidu has been selected to make presentations at national conferences and webinars on such topics as increasing enrollment yield rates in higher education, global student recruitment efforts, creating a holistic experience through a unified mobile application, and enhancing student recruitment through mobile services.

Naidu’s previous experiences also include being director of online marketing and analytics for Williams Randall Marketing in Indianapolis.

“I have long admired Rose-Hulman and believe it shares my convictions regarding access and value of higher education,” Naidu states. “These are challenging times in higher education with institutions facing similar pressures regarding affordability and cost containment, the enrollment challenges with a shrinking market and increased competition, brand awareness, and fundraising and endowment growth. Communications and marketing must play an important role in achieving success in each of these key areas,” Naidu said.

Naidu earned a master’s of business administration degree and a bachelor’s of management information systems degree, both from ISU.

A young leader in the Terre Haute community, Naidu was a member of the inaugural 2015 Class of the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce’s 12 Under 40 award recipients. He is the current governor of Rotary International’s southern Indiana clubs and has been a member of the Terre Haute Rotary Club since 2004. Naidu also has been a member of the Terre Haute Human Relations Commission and Union Hospital Foundation, along with having leadership roles in the United Way of the Wabash Valley, Wabash Valley Art Spaces, Wabash Valley Community Foundation, and Wabash Valley Goodwill Industries.