Ben Smith Named Dean of Students at Catawba College
February 18, 2011
Since June of 2005, George "Ben" Smith has worked in a variety of capacities in Catawba College's Office of Student Affairs. He has served as Assistant Director, responsible for Housing and Residence Life, as Associate Dean of Students, directing Conduct Administration and Intramural and Wellness programs, and since November, he has served as Interim Dean of Students.
Catawba College Provost Dr. Rick Stephens announced Feb. 18 that Smith is the new Dean of Students at Catawba and said that this new role will utilize Smith's cumulative experience at the college. "Ben is intimately acquainted with student life on our campus and understands just how important a role his office plays in the overall college experience of our students," Stephens said.
"While we had more than 70 applicants for the position, Ben's overall passion for his work and his knowledge of residential life here made him our leading candidate of choice, hands down. He has always been willing to step up to the plate and assume more responsibilities and his promotion will afford him no exception. I look forward to working with him as we wrap up this academic year and make ready for new and returning students next fall."
Well-liked by students, faculty and staff on Catawba's campus and known as a team player, Smith noted his professional passion is for Student Life. "The best reward of my career thus far is having a direct impact on the development and growth of college students," Smith said.
A native of South Carolina, Smith earned his bachelor of science degree in Exercise Science with a minor in Business from the University of South Carolina-Aiken and his master's of education degree from the University of South Carolina, Columbia.
While a student at USC Aiken, he served as Intramural Coordinating Supervisor. For a year leading up to and following his graduation there, he continued to work as an Exercise Specialist and Coordinator for Special Services. During his time as a graduate student at USC Columbia, Smith served as Director of Academic Enrichment for South Area Residence Life, responsible for providing an effective living and learning community for more than 3,000 student residents.
At Catawba, Ben was recognized for two consecutive academic years, in 2007-2008 and 2008-2009, as College Staff Member of the Year, based on a popular vote of the student body; and he was the recipient of the Paul Fisher Service Award in 2008-2009 for his outstanding commitment to volunteerism and service. He served as On-Site Director of Logistics for Catawba's Study Abroad Program in Costa Rica during the summers of 2006 and 2008, traveling with groups of 50 students for one month, monitoring their well-being, assisting with logistics, weekly excursions and coordinating host family lodging.
He is a member of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators and the National Intramural Recreational Sports Association.
Married to wife Sabrina, the couple lives in Salisbury.