Renee Grant, currently the associate director of the Office of Intercultural Affairs, has been named the new director of the Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program and the Academic Opportunity Program.
Renee Grant has been selected to lead the Colleges’ Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program and the Academic Opportunity Program (HEOP/AOP), which support students who present an alternate academic profile and demonstrate high potential to compete successfully in an academically competitive environment.
Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Khuram Hussain says Grant is “a dynamic leader and student advocate, producing high impact, culturally responsive and academically meaningful initiatives,” and notes the “universal endorsement” she received from the HEOP/AOP and Intercultural Affairs staff. “We cannot wait to see where she takes the program next, as she supports our next generation of scholars and leaders.”
Since joining HWS in 2016, Grant has served as assistant director of housing operations before being named associate director of the Office of Intercultural Affairs in the summer of 2019. In the latter role, she engaged with student clubs and organizations, developed programming focused on diversity, equity and inclusion and served as an HEOP adviser. “Because of the great experience I had working with HEOP students, when the director position opened up, it seemed like a natural fit,” she says.
James Burruto is retiring as director of HEOP/AOP after 20 years with the Colleges while Edith Wormley will continue to serve as associate director. “Jim and Edith have done a really amazing job in building HEOP/AOP into the strong programs that they are,” says Grant. “A lot of the work that I’d like to do is to continue to move in the positive direction they’ve set in motion.”
The HEOP/AOP staff provides academic counseling and personal support to more than 75 Hobart and William Smith program students each year. “The students coming though the programs are strong and amazing,” Grant says. “I’m here to make sure we are continuing to provide them with the resources they need to excel at HWS.”
Grant earned a B.A. in social science from Ramapo College of New Jersey and an M.A. in higher education administration from Rowan University. Her interest in a career in higher education was sparked when she held a job as a housing intern in the residential life office as an undergraduate.
As she assumes leadership of HEOP/AOP, Grant is ready to “push the needle to make sure that our students reach their potential. There’s so much opportunity. I’m looking forward to leveraging the backgrounds and experiences of our students to further their college education — and beyond.”
Photo above courtesy of Brandon L. Swain Photography.