College of Arts and Humanities hires Veratta Pegram-Floyd as Director of Advising

Jackie Tran, Staff Reporter

Mark Meister, the Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities said he was thrilled to hire Veratta Pegram-Floyd as the new Director of Advising for the college. She will begin work on June 15 and will supervise four academic advisors, oversee the advising program and have the opportunity to design an advising program for the departments making up the college.

The College of Arts and Humanities is made up of 8 departments: Art and design, Communications, English, History, Music, Philosophy, Religious Studies and World Languages and Culture.  

“Together we are a community of teachers, staff, and students who are committed in providing students with opportunity for a transformative experience,” Meister said.

The college aims to create opportunities for leadership as well as introduce vocational career options in the form of internships and externships, sometimes sending students across the country.  

“Our primary focus is providing opportunities for students to engage in their leadership potential,” Meister said. “The reason we make that emphasis is so that we can show students vocational career opportunities that they may not think of when they think of a degree program in English or music or art design.”  

The director of advising position is focused around helping students work over difficulties and graduate.  

“The director will oversee all advising and career services for students. They’ll supervise the four academic advisors.” Meister said.  

The director may also help students explore further with activities like service learning in the community and creating clear goals for first generation college students, a group that currently makes up 20% of CWU’s student population. Overall, they will also work to improve graduation rates.  

“They’ll be designing a whole series of programs and initiatives that will help students return and graduate from CWU,” Meister said.

Pegram-Floyd is a Seattle native and a first generation college student. She is currently working at Tykeson College in the University of Oregon, and in her current position as an academic and career coordinator she supervises 8 advisors who, in turn, advise 3,500 students.  

According to Pegram-Floyd, she has worked in property management, nonprofit organizations, student affairs, a diversity committee, creative writing and more.  

“I have varied experiences across the board professionally and I think that’s important for students to know as well,” Pegram-Floyd said.  

Her current program is nationally recognized and has won awards from the National Advising Collegiate Association. 

At CWU, Pegram-Floyd plans to work on process and policy improvement as well as look for areas to develop. From her understanding, CWU has a very inclusive environment that emphasizes access, equity, diversity and inclusion in a close-knit community, all factors that she supports and would like to grow on. Having a system that encourages support and meaningful engagement is also very important to her.  

“Support and meaningful engagement is both essential to the [campus] community and then the surrounding community as well,” Pegram-Floyd said.

She also brings experience as a first generation student that she would like to use in advising to make the processes as clear as possible and help students be proactive not reactive.   

Moving from a large university to CWU, Pegram-Floyd said she always looks at the position and then the institution. While she said she may need to adjust to the new infrastructure, she appreciates the supportive home unit that CWU maintains.  

“Quite frankly, I found that [the people were] very refreshing. I appreciated the honesty,” Pegram-Floyd said.

Having been at multiple universities, Meister said she has had a lot of training and will bring forward several perspectives.

“She’s bringing to Central a whole wealth of experience that is directly and immediately going to benefit our students,” Meister said.