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VP Engagement speaks about his role

White plans to create more career opportunities for students

By Kristen Mott

March 1, 2012

As the first vice president of University Engagement, Byron White plans to increase community engagement efforts and create more career opportunities for Cleveland State students.

Byron White, AP University EngagementWhite officially began the position on Feb. 6. He said that the skills he learned working as a journalist and urban beat writer served as the foundation for his community efforts – many of which carry over into his new position.

One of White’s goals is to create an infrastructure for the university’s community engagement efforts. He believes this is necessary to sustain and maintain the community endeavors.

“I want to make sure our engagement efforts tie into the university’s top priorities,” White said.

As part of his role, White will be responsible for overseeing CSU’s partnership with the Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED). White will work alongside Mark Penn, special adviser to the president at NEOMED and vice provost for health affairs at CSU, to implement a community strategy for the partnership.

White also said he would like to involve more students in university initiatives. He noted that some initiatives are faculty- or administration-driven, while others are mostly student-driven.

“I want to make sure we’re supporting all three of those efforts and creating synergy,” White said.

As for student opportunities, White said he would like to continue to develop a structure for internships and cooperatives for students.
He said it is important for university programs to be aligned with the needs of its students.

White is a former vice chancellor for the Ohio Board of Regents and a former associate
vice president for Community Engagement at Xavier University.

He currently serves on the advisory board of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University.