West Virginia University Vice President of Student Life Bill Schafer has announced he will be stepping down, effective Jan. 2, 2017. Schafer will be pursuing other strategic opportunities within higher education.
A veteran student life administrator, Schafer came to WVU in March 2015 after spending 11 years as the vice president of student affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology. During his time at WVU, he has brought vision and direction through restructuring the Division to align it with university strategic initiatives, as well as nationally recruited talent to fill key redesigned leadership positions in housing and residence life, Greek life, student engagement and leadership, and student conduct.
He has also worked with student leaders to enhance student life programs, supported development of programs such as the Collegiate Recovery Program, and worked with a team from both the University and the City to create the cooperative zone for Greek housing, all of which have reinforced a positive, caring culture at WVU.
“I have enjoyed my time at WVU immensely and believe we have developed a good foundation that will serve student life well in the future,” said Schafer. “While I will miss the students and the team, I look forward to the opportunities that I have before me. I am humbled to have had this opportunity to work with President Gee and learn from his decades of Presidential leadership.”
President Gordon Gee echoed Schafer’s sentiments that a solid foundation has been established.
“Bill is a well-known and respected national leader in student life,” said Gee. “We are extremely fortunate to have had him as part of our team as we worked to move the University in a new direction. The new programs and additions in leadership that have evolved over the past two years will continue to shape student life and student culture on our campus.”
Gee also announced Corey Farris will be named dean of students and lead the Division of Student Life. Farris who currently serves as dean of students and associate vice president of student life, will report directly to Gee and oversee all components of Student Life. This transition will begin effective immediately.
“Corey understands the heartbeat of this university is the energy and the success of our students,” Gee said. “I am extremely confident that he will lead this unit – and our students – with vision, passion, and the understanding that we must all work together to create a campus where all students thrive.”
Since joining WVU in 1991, Farris has served in various leadership roles within Student Life including new student services, residential education, housing and university apartments and student conduct. He has served in the role of dean of students since 2010.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to lead the Division of Student Life,” said Farris. “Nothing is more important to me than the success of our students. I look forward to continuing to work with our students on a day-to-day basis celebrating their accomplishments and navigating their path through WVU.”
Farris received a bachelor’s degree from WVU in business administration in 1981. Three years later, he graduated with a master’s degree in student personnel from Ohio State University.
CONTACT: John A. Bolt/University Communications
304.293.5520 / 304.382.4707
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