C. Ray Williams, Jr., currently assistant director of the Multicultural Academic Opportunities Program at Virginia Tech has been named the university’s director of multicultural programs and services.

In his new position, Williams will provide leadership for the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services, an administrative unit established in 2005 to address the academic and co-curricular needs of all students, particularly those who are members of historically marginalized and underrepresented populations that may have concerns not addressed by other areas in the university. The Office of Multicultural Programs and Services offers programs and services that are committed to the holistic development of all students as it relates to their cultural, personal, social, and intellectual growth. Activities of the office include administration of the Black Cultural Center and Multicultural Center; planning and implementing heritage celebrations and cultural awareness programs; advising multicultural student organizations; developing and managing the events of major programming organizations; education, outreach, and research; advocacy; recruitment; retention; and academic support services.

For the remainder of this academic year, the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services will be in the Provost’s area and report to Dr. Karen Eley Sanders, assistant provost and director of academic support services. The office will move to the Division of Student Affairs and will report to a new assistant vice president for student affairs. The search for that position is underway.

“We are fortunate to have someone with a wealth of knowledge and experience in multicultural programs, academic enrichment, retention, and undergraduate admission and recruitment joining us at such a critical time,” Sanders said. Williams will begin his appointment April 17.

Williams received a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Radford University where served as a residence hall director. From there, he assumed a position as assistant director of admissions where his responsibilities included minority, international and non-traditional student admissions. He was instrumental in the development and management of several recruitment and retention programs. Thereafter, Williams assumed a similar role at Roanoke College as assistant dean of admissions with responsibilities for target marketing campaigns.

Williams left higher education and worked in the private sector as an operations and underwriting manager for Allstate Insurance Company. Williams went on to own and operate his own insurance agency in Christiansburg, Va.

Williams returned to higher education by joining the undergraduate admissions staff at Virginia Tech in March of 2002. He is a Multicultural Fellow, serves on the boards of the Diversity Certificate Program and the Pamplin College of Business, Department of Management’s PACE Project, advises student organizations, and serves as facilitator for several diversity activities.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become among the largest universities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.

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