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Jody Goodman

Jody Goodman headshot

Affiliation: Alumna
Program: EdD, Higher Education
Previous Education: BA, Indiana University of Pennsylvania (International Studies); MS, New School University (Human Resources Management); MS, Northeastern University (Leadership); MEd, University of Massachusetts Amherst (Higher Education Administration)

For Jody Goodman, who graduated in 2012 with an accelerated EdD in higher education, Warner administrators and staff reinforced what her grandfather had always told her—that education is a right, not a privilege.

“The work that they do and the level of support that they give reaffirms that everybody has that right,” she says. “As educators, it’s our job to make sure we’re giving students the knowledge to be successful when they move on in their life….Warner was the best grad school experience I’ve ever had because it prepared me extremely well to jump into my career, and I will forever be grateful for that.”

Goodman has had ample opportunity to compare notes. She earned master’s degrees in human resources management from The New School in Manhattan and in leadership from Northeastern University in Boston, as well as a master’s degree in higher education from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where she assumed a newly created position as director of student success in the College of Engineering in March 2015. In her new role, Goodman will implement and coordinate programs to enhance the academic success of all undergraduate students as well as provide services to help address the recruitment, retention, and graduation rate of all students, including underrepresented students in the college.

She previously served as the assistant director for leadership and community service at the college. “My days were pretty much consumed with figuring out how to build our leadership programs,” she says, reflecting back to her prior position.

That task required a huge time commitment (she worked seven days a week during the start of the school year) and an ability to juggle numerous projects. She oversaw Lead UMass, an initiative that matches undergraduates with experiential leadership opportunities, and Volunteer UMass, a clearinghouse for community service and civic engagement opportunities on campus and in the region. She started Take The LEAD!, an emerging leaders program, which introduces students to the concept and multiple benefits of leadership, community and civic engagement; the program offers students the option to receive two credits for participation. In addition to helping launch a program to recognize female students for their leadership contributions on campus, she oversaw the planning and implementation of the Annual Student Leadership Conference, which drew participation from 134 students and the Annual Mass Impact Day of Service, which drew participation from 410 students, faculty and staff and 28 area partners.

These responsibilities, while planning monthly student activities and advising 82 student organizations, were responsible for the high turnover rate in Goodman’s position, though she says Warner almost made her “overconfident” when it comes to taking on a challenge.

“But I couldn’t have made it out of there without the level of support I had,” she explains. “They treated you as a person first, then they’d ask about how things were going in the classroom. Warner is just a very special place.”