Back for Round 3

William ‘Billy’ Linscott returned to Rockhurst this school year after previously being here as a student and faculty member.


Owen Dean

Assistant Dean William “Billy” Linscott is back at Rockhurst for the third time, his second in his current position. “[Rockhurst is] just a big part of my life. It’s just great to be back,” he said.

Reilly Bell-Boman, Staff Reporter

The start of the 2022-23 school year brought about many changes to the school and faculty. One such change is the new Assistant Dean of Students, William Linscott. While Linscott is new to the students, he is not new to Rockhurst. In fact, Linscott is on his third round here after first attending as a student and later becoming the Assistant Dean for a couple years.

Linscott graduated in 2009. During his years at Rockhurst, Linscott developed a love of football, theology and English. When discussing his love of English, Linscott mentioned the names of three of his teachers who are still part of the faculty of Rockhurst: Matt Darby, Mike Wickenhauser and Andrew Hagedorn.

“They were just awesome teachers.”

By the end of his Senior year, Linscott loved reading and writing and he knew that it was something he wanted to continue with.

After graduating from Rockhurst, Linscott enrolled at Wheaton College just outside of Chicago. Wheaton, however, was certainly not his first choice.

“I would probably say it was like my 900th choice,” Linscott stated jokingly.

Linscott initially had no interest in Wheaton and stopped taking their calls until a few alumni from Wheaton here in Kansas City reached out and encouraged him to give the school a chance.

“I didn’t want to go on a visit… and 36 hours into being on my visit there I said I wanna commit to being there for four years. It was the guys. It was the people there. I had never really met people like that before. I had never met that many people that were in a community like that together, and I was like ‘I wanna spend the next four years of my life with these people’ and so I did.”

While attending Wheaton, Linscott was an English Lit major with a Bible Theology minor. Linscott realized his love of English during a late night of working on an essay for his writing class. Linscott says he vividly remembers thinking “This paper is due in nine hours, and I’m not stressed about it. I actually like that I get to do this. This is weirdly fun to me.”

Upon handing in his essay, Linscott asked his professor what an English major would look like. His professor proceeded to show him a list of classes which Linscott says he thought sounded amazing, leading him to major in English.

One summer in college, Linscott studied abroad in England through a program in Wheaton’s English department. Members of the study abroad program stayed at Durham University in Oxford but brought professors from Wheaton. That summer abroad is what inspired Linscott to enroll in theology classes and get a Bible Theology minor.

Linscott played football in high school at Rockhurst, so he joined the team at Wheaton. He says he spent most of his freshman year working hard at practice to better himself and to help the starters get better, but he did get to play on special teams in games. The beginning of sophomore year brought recurring headaches, leading to Linscott to undergo tests. An MRI revealed a herniation of brain tissue, ending Linscott’s football career.

Linscott stayed involved with the football team as a student assistant until a coaching position with the defensive line opened up his senior year. Since he’d been working with the team, Linscott was offered the coaching position. 

“That was crazy being a 21-year-old and coaching other 21-year-olds.”

He says his time coaching was a challenge that allowed him to grow and develop his leadership skills.

Many of the guys on the football team that Linscott looked up to were going into positions like ministry, teaching, coaching or counseling. Linscott realized that he felt most alive and excited about pursuing a position in one of those fields. During his senior year, Linscott heard that David Alvey was leaving as Dean of Students at Rockhurst and Darby was taking over as well as creating the position of assistant dean. During his winter break, Linscott put in an application for the job and came back during spring break to do an interview, after which he got the job.

“It was nice kinda having the job figured out before I graduated.”

The opportunity to teach and coach as well as lead young men in their formation was exactly what he was looking for and something he was passionate about. 

“Being somebody that can help teach and guide younger guys, like when I was coaching my senior at Wheaton, I was like ‘Man I love the opportunity to lead and grow and explain things and correct and help guys improve.’ That’s just really fun for me.” 

The position of assistant dean allowed him to fit everything he was doing into a teaching/guiding mold.

“Rockhurst itself is a unique place. Big believer in faith-based education, big believer in single gender education, and I know this place. This was a big part of my story and I wanted to be part of it. A lot of us here are alumnus and for good reason. Rockhurst really makes a mark on you and I decided to be a part of what Rockhurst is doing here.”

After working at Rockhurst from 2013 to 2018, Linscott realized that things were changing at the church he was actively involved in, and a position opened which would allow him to continue the teaching/guiding work that he was passionate about, but in a new environment. He knew this new position wouldn’t last forever and, although leaving Rockhurst would be difficult, the change of pace in life would be a good thing.

“It just felt like the right time to try something new for a season,” Linscott said.

Eventually Linscott left his ministry post to pursue a doctorate in Theology full time at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. He says he enjoyed Scotland and the good friends he made while he was there, but became fatigued from doing nothing but independent research full-time. Earlier this year, he found out his old position of assistant dean would be opening up, and Linscott was asked if he would be willing to come back. He accepted the invitation, and rejoined Rockhurst after being gone for four years. Currently, Linscott is not coaching or teaching so that he can continue his PhD studies after school and be home with his family.

Having worked at Rockhurst for two different stints, Linscott says the school remains as it always has been at its core, but he says he has noticed some changes caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I think Covid really disrupted and changed a lot of rhythms. It feels like, maybe this applies to Rockhurst or maybe this applies to everyone, but maybe we’re all just trying to get our footing again and get back into a routine.”

This year marks Linscott’s third round and tenth year overall as a member of Rockhurst. After being a student for four years and the first assistant dean for five, Linscott is still happy to be part of Rockhurst and its mission.

“I’m just glad to be back… Rockhurst has been an off and on part of my life. Now, this is essentially my third time coming here. Came here as a student, left. Came here the first time, left. Came here again, and it’s just a big part of my life. It’s just great to be back.”


7 Questions with Mr. Linscott

  • Favorite color? Blue
  • Favorite food? A nice bowl of cereal. (During his time on the football team, the players formed a cereal club where the members would bring a new box of cereal to the club every week. If someone missed a meeting, then, the next week, they had to eat their bowl of cereal without any milk. If someone missed two meetings, then they had to eat their cereal with water.)
  • Favorite place eat out? Chipotle  
  • Favorite football team? The Chiefs 
  • If he could have any car, what would it be? An original 1940’s Jeep. “I always thought those were really really cool, the original Jeeps.”
  • Current hobbies? Spending time with his family, working on his PhD and cycling 
  • Chick-Fil-A order? A spicy chicken sandwich with a large fry and a Powerade, or a peppermint milkshake when they’re in season