Samantha (Sam) DeVries

Associate Professor

JWU Faculty Since 2005

JWU shield

Contact Info


Sam DeVries is a 15-year veteran of Johnson & Wales University with nearly 25 years of teaching experience. At the university, she currently teaches within the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Professional Studies and College of Food Innovation and Technology. DeVries has a wealth of cultural exposure living and working in England, France, Spain and the U.S. She attended colleges in England, France (undergraduate) and the U.S. (undergraduate and graduate). Domestically, DeVries earned her undergraduate degree in hospitality administration, and earned both her master's and doctoral degrees in educational leadership (curriculum design and higher education administration). DeVries' doctoral education is from Northeastern University in Boston. Her dissertation focused on the retention and the lived (phenomenological) experiences of low-income students in post-secondary education. This was a subject close to her heart, especially as this was a reflection of much of her educational experiences as a young student in Europe.

Outside of teaching, DeVries spends much of her time volunteering for numerous NGO's (non-governmental organizations) in the Charlotte area. This work focuses on social justice initiatives seeking to benefit typically marginalized communities, particularly those under the LGBTQ+ umbrella. Her pronouns are She/Her/Hers.


  • Ed.D., Higher Education Administration, Northeastern University
  • M.Ed., Curriculum & Instruction, University of Phoenix
  • B.S., Hospitality Management, Robert Morris University
  • B-Tec National Diploma, Restaurant Operations, College of Further Education, England
  • Angelo/French Certificate, Restaurant/Hotel Operations, Lycee Professional College, France

Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always. Robin Williams

Teaching Interests

The creation of participative and engaging curriculum that enhances student success both inside and outside of the classroom.

Scholarly Interests

The research and application of practices that seek to create a more inclusive and supportive teaching environment with respect to diversity and the intersectionality of our student body.


  • CUL2510 Contemporary Restaurant Operations and Management
  • LEAD1010 Foundations of Leadership Studies
  • ILS2330 The Good Life

Professional Affiliations

Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE), American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute
Protecting Human Research Participants, National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Extramural Research
Foodservice Management Professional, National Restaurant Association
Certified Professional Wine Educator, International Wine Guild
Certified Specialist of Wine, Society of Wine Educators
Certified Dining Room Professional, Federation of Dining Room Professionals


Honors And Awards

  • 2020 #Impact honoree by the Charlotte LGBT Chamber of Commerce

Q&A with Samantha (Sam)

At JWU, education is not confined to the four walls of the classroom. You’re not going to spend four years with your nose buried in a book, learning theories you may never get a chance to apply — you’re going to get out there and apply them, be it through internships, group projects, leadership opportunities, competitions and more.

What Is Your Favorite Teaching Moment?

After many years of teaching and thousands of students, it would be hard to find one singular moment; however, graduation has always been, and will remain, my favorite time of the year. To see the realization after years of hard work and dedication by our students are memories I will cherish forever.

What Advice Do You Have For Incoming Freshmen?

My advice to any incoming student would be to establish a meaningful and positive connection with someone at the university. These connections have been shown to dramatically increase the likelihood of persistence within institutions of higher education.

What College Do You Teach In?

College of Food Innovation & Technology