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New director of civic engagement named

  • headshot: Travus Burton
  • headshot: Travus Burton

Posted on December 04, 2017

Travus Burton has been named Grand Valley's director for civic learning and community engagement, a position housed in the Office of the Provost.

He will begin his new role January 9, replacing Ruth Stegeman, who retired in August.

Burton is currently the experiential learning coordinator for Oakland University's Office of Student Success and Experiential Learning Center.

Suzeanne Benet, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs, said Burton brings prior experience and leadership skills necessary to move the university's civic action plan forward.

"The search committee was impressed with Travus' past work with faculty members and the support he garnered to develop community partnerships and assist faculty with designing experiential learning components of a course," Benet said.

Burton said he is honored to work at Grand Valley and said the university "values community engagement at the highest level."

"I am eager to begin exploring the possibilities for new collaborations, while building upon some of the great initiatives and plans already in motion," he said. "A major goal is to continue building a culture that values and utilizes community engagement in all aspects of the education we provide and the work we do at Grand Valley." 

Prior to his position at Oakland University, Burton served as service learning coordinator for Central Michigan University's Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. He was president of the Isabella County Restoration House Board of Directors and instrumental in establishing the county's first shelter to address homelessness. Burton also worked as a HUD case manager for Capital Area Community Services in Lansing.

He is working toward a doctoral degree in education from CMU; Burton earned a bachelor's degree in communication and sociology from Saginaw Valley State University, and a master's degree in educational leadership from CMU.

A reception to welcome Burton to campus is planned for January 30, 4:30-6:30 p.m., in the Exhibition Hall of the DeVos Center.