Following a national search, Jeanine Ward-Roof of Tallahassee, Fla., has been named vice president for Student Affairs at Ferris State University. She will begin her position as Ferris’ chief Student Affairs officer on Feb. 17. She currently serves as dean of students at Florida State University, a position she has held since 2006.
In making the announcement, Ferris President David Eisler cited Ward-Roof’s commitment to students. “In every answer she connected her response to students. She will be a wonderful advocate for our students and a strong leader for our student recruitment and student development programs. Her breadth of experience and success in student affairs at nationally recognized institutions, coupled with her research and teaching accomplishments, will serve Ferris well. We are delighted she is joining our leadership team.”
Eisler expressed his appreciation to all members of Ferris’ vice president for Student Affairs search committee, especially co-chairs Dr. Clifton Franklund, 2012 Distinguished Teacher, and Sara Dew, director of Financial Aid, for their outstanding work in bringing this national search to a successful conclusion. “This was an extraordinarily strong pool with a number of excellent candidates who will be capable vice presidents, but Dr. Ward-Roof is ideally suited for Ferris, for our students, and for our community.”
Ward-Roof replaces Interim Vice President Donald Flickinger, who returned to Ferris from retirement when Daniel Burcham announced his retirement as Student Affairs vice president in March.
“I am honored and excited with the opportunity to serve as vice president for Student Affairs at Ferris State University,” said Ward-Roof. “I look forward to working with President Eisler and his leadership team, the faculty, students and staff as we continue to advance our student-centered mission where the entire community is focused on student success. I also am energized by opportunities to integrate all aspects of student life into the academic life of the institution, work with faculty and others to increase retention and reduce the graduation gap experienced by different populations of students, prepare and implement enrollment strategies for the future and help students better understand student debt and financial aid options.”
As dean of students at Florida State University, Ward-Roof supervises more than 50 staff and manages a $3.5 million budget. Through the Local Fees Committee and Campus Recreation Board, she allocates another $5 million annually. She leads goal setting, strategic planning, assessment and evaluation for the Dean of Students Department; oversees outreach to students and their families to support recruitment and retention efforts; serves as Title IX co-coordinator; coordinates the student threat assessment process; and recently was involved in discussions that led to the construction of new student affairs facilities. She also is an adjunct faculty member in Florida State’s College of Education, teaching on the topics of financial management, student affairs issues and utilizing campus and community resources effectively to advance in the student affairs profession.
At Ferris she will be responsible for the leadership, direction, supervision and assessment of Enrollment Services (Admissions, Registrar, Financial Aid, Student Employment and Institutional Research and Testing offices) and Student Life (Birkam Health and Personal Counseling Center; Office of Multicultural Student Services; Center for Leadership, Activities and Career Services; Office of Student Conduct; University Center; and University Recreation). She also will collaborate with the Office of Housing and Residence Life, under the direction of the vice president for Administration and Finance, to advance student learning outside of the classroom.
Prior to joining Florida State, Ward-Roof spent 16 years at Clemson University in positions of increasing responsibility, culminating in her role as director of Student Development Services, which included coordinating the undergraduate orientation program for more than 7,000 participants, as well as developing and managing a broad-based parents’ program. Her experience has spanned the areas of advising, assessment, campus ministry, disability services, first-year programs, retention, student organizations and substance abuse education, among others.
She also worked at the University of Findlay, in Ohio, as assistant to the vice president for Student Affairs and as area coordinator of women’s residence halls, and Babson College, in Massachusetts, as assistant to the director of Financial Aid/Career Services.
Ward-Roof is active in professional student affairs organizations, such as the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, serving as Region III director and national board member; National Orientation Directors Association, as a member of the Orientation Professionals Institute faculty; and the American College Personnel Association.
Her recent published research and presentations have focused on the first-year college experience, parental involvement in student success, campus safety, critical issues in student affairs, civility and stress and change management. She also has consulted primarily in the areas of orientation, new student programs, student life and student activities.
Ward-Roof earned a bachelor’s degree in Communication from Ohio University, a master’s in College Student Personnel from Bowling Green State University and a Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership from Clemson University. She and her husband, Mark, director of Internships and Career Services for the College of Business at Florida State, and their 13-month-old daughter, Jeanna, will relocate to Big Rapids.