Furman University invites inquiries, nominations, and applications for the director of campus recreation and wellness. The director of campus recreation and wellness supports the vision, mission, and values of Furman University to create a vibrant campus in which students enjoy a broad experience within a close-knit community.

The Position


The director of campus recreation and wellness is responsible for department oversight of three full-time employees and one part-time rugby coach; indirect supervision for several part-time fitness staff, lifeguards, club sports coaches, referees, and student employees; oversight of 21 club sports teams and 11 intramural leagues; and a $320,000 budget.

Reporting to the associate dean of student involvement and engagement within the Division of Student Life, the director will provide visionary and strategic leadership, supervision, and management of campus recreation programs and facilities, including services and operations, activities, events, indoor and outdoor facilities and fields, marketing and communications, fiscal management including revenue-generating services, staffing and supervision, general administration, and risk management. Programs include intramural sports and club sports; individual and group fitness; aquatics; outdoor adventure activities including the challenge course and Frisbee golf course; and pre-orientation adventure experiences for new students. The director of campus recreation and wellness serves in the professional on-call rotation for Student Life.

The director develops and implements a campus recreation and wellness strategic plan that aligns with The Furman Advantage (TFA) pillars: belongingness, health and wellbeing, student success, engaged learning, campus vibrancy/social life, and the incorporation and expansion of tenets of Furman’s diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) plan. In addition, the director serves as the primary building manager for The Herman W. Lay Physical Activities Center (PAC), working collaboratively with Health Sciences, Summer Programs, Military Science, The Institute for the Advancement of Community Health, Sports Medicine, and Athletics to schedule the fitness center, lap and therapy pools, gymnasium, and dance/fitness studio to coordinate facility use. The director develops and maintains risk management protocols for all campus recreation and wellness activities and programs following best practice models of the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) and the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS).

The director of campus recreation and wellness advises the Club Sports Council and the appointment of the Student Government Associate (SGA) representative; oversees department learning outcomes and assessment; and serves on the Employee Wellness Committee and the newly formed Student Health and Wellbeing Committee.


Dr. Owen McFadden is the current Director of Campus Recreation. He will retire in the summer of 2022 after 38 years at Furman University.


Furman is seeking a dynamic and experienced professional to lead campus recreation and wellness comprehensively for students, faculty, and staff. The director will have a broad role in leading the campus to develop creative, state-of-the-art physical fitness programs. Close collaboration with key constituents, including the Office of Student Involvement and Engagement, Housing and Residence Life, the Center for Inclusive Communities, Office of Spiritual Life, Mentoring and Advising, Student Life, and the inaugural student health and wellbeing coordinator whose services and programs for students will be essential for the success of the new director.

Additional priorities, challenges, and opportunities for the director to exercise leadership and impact positive change in the Furman community have been articulated by stakeholders as follows.

  • Opportunity to build robust and comprehensive community-facing programs which embrace equity and inclusion and an appreciation for a community culture engaged in ongoing education and dialogue on equitable practices and behaviors
  • Develop a departmental mission and vision focused on customer service, operational effectiveness, teamwork, communication, leadership development, and inclusive excellence
  • Strengthen communication, partnership, planning, and facilities management best practices with the PAC facility partners: Health Sciences, Summer Programs, Military Science, Sports Medicine, The Institute for the Advancement of Community Health, and Athletics
  • Evaluate and assess campus recreation and wellness and develop a strategic plan that encompasses departmental operations; programs and services, including club sports, intramurals, fitness, outdoor recreation, and the challenge course; facilities usage, maintenance, and expansion; and organizational structure, optimal staffing levels, and configuration for achieving departmental goals and priorities
  • Develop ongoing, outcomes-based assessments of facilities, services, programs, and activities
  • Formulate a professional development plan for staff members within the department and work to strengthen communication, support, and employee engagement and investment
  • Partner with student involvement and leadership to strengthen and enhance student leadership development for club sports leaders, intramural sports team captains, and student employees
  • Opportunity to join campus-wide strategic planning around wellness and wellbeing
  • Establish effective relationships with campus and community partners
  • Work closely with divisional and institutional leadership to advocate and participate in conversations regarding future renovation and construction projects


The Furman director of campus recreation and wellness will be a strong partner and collaborator across the campus. The new director will be an innovative and savvy strategic thinker, will work with others to develop and implement a vision, and will inspire the campus community to come together to accomplish shared goals for the future.

At an appropriate interval after joining Furman, the following will initially define success for the new director of campus recreation and wellness.

  • Staff in campus recreation can articulate a shared vision and mission and will feel valued as members of the campus recreation team.
  • PAC facility partners appreciate clear and consistent communication, clarity in policies and practices related to facility reservations and priorities, and a more intentional and formalized sense of partnership and colleagueship.
  • Students and staff see the new director of campus recreation and wellness as both approachable and accessible, an advocate who supports programs and, through a student-centered orientation, builds rapport with students and seeks their input.
  • Campus recreation programs and participation are considered important to the student experience and student belonging. Outcomes and assessments of those contributions are used to validate that perception.
  • Student employees see their work in campus recreation as a valuable and intentionally developmental part of their student experience.
  • The Club Sports Council is fully developed and engaged, providing leadership development for student leaders.
  • Campus recreation and wellness is seen as a critical partner in building a holistic wellness model that is supported by the work of the campus recreation department.



The successful candidate should possess a master’s degree in a related field and have demonstrated progressive professional experience within a campus recreation, student union, student activities, or wellness organization, including experience with multiple facilities and programs, staff supervision, and budget management; proven ability in leading organizational transformation, with a capacity to effect change in the institutional culture and operations; demonstrated knowledge of the importance of health, wellness, recreation, and fitness to a campus community, as well as an understanding of the theories, principles, and practices of student development and higher education administration; strong communication, organizational, fiscal, and relationship building skills with the ability to work collaboratively with key campus and community partners. A demonstrated commitment and orientation toward equity and inclusion and cultural competency in all aspects of campus life will be essential considerations in selecting the next director of campus recreation and wellness.

Additionally, the following characteristics and attributes were identified by various stakeholders when considering the director for campus recreation and wellness position.

  • Record of superior communication and presentation skills, successful relationship building, and collaboration with internal and external stakeholder groups
  • Knowledge of and experience with membership development, budget management, financial projections, and revenue enhancement for campus recreation facilities
  • Knowledgeable regarding national best practices in campus recreation, including the concept of using research and assessment to guide decision-making
  • Demonstrated experience effectively supervising, advocating, coaching, and mentoring professional staff and providing staff with meaningful professional development and recognition opportunities to further expand their learning and growth
  • Demonstrated orientation toward equity and inclusion and cultural competency in all aspects of campus life
  • Highly collaborative communicative style with the capacity to foster relationships with key stakeholders, campus leaders, and community partners
  • Flexible to adapt to changing circumstances and committed to continuous assessment and process improvement
  • Robust entrepreneurial spirit with the ability to generate new ideas and see the idea through to implementation
  • Forward-thinking leader with a strong vision for the department and its future growth and potential
  • Decisive leader with the capability to make tough decisions while also explaining the rationale behind those decisions
  • Commitment to integrity, respect, transparency, and honesty in all endeavors
  • Familiarity with technology/social media and how to leverage these media to more effectively reach constituents
  • Proficient in higher education administration with attention given to best practices in risk management, and financial oversight and stewardship of university resources and assets.
  • Strong background in student development and understanding its importance in recreational sports within students’ collegiate experience and student success

Institution & Location


With 21 club sports teams, a wide variety of intramural sports teams, and other recreational opportunities, including group exercise classes and swimming, it is easy for students to connect during leisure time. Furman club teams have won numerous national championships, and students earn serious campus bragging rights through competitive intramural sports leagues.

Club Sports
Intramural Sports
Group Fitness
Lap Pool

• The Herman W. Lay Physical Activities Center or PAC is the hub of student fitness and recreational programs and activities. It is home to dozens of aerobic, strength, and weightlifting machines, free weights, and has a basketball court, dance studio, and swimming pool. Whether a health nut or simply looking to get in shape, community members will find plenty of options in this 6,000-square foot workout space.
• L0w ropes/challenge course
• Two campus recreation fields
• The Roberts Rugby Pitch
The Furman Outdoors Club (FUOC) storage/social space
• Nine-hole Frisbee golf course


Connie Carson – Vice President of Student Life

Connie L. Carson is the Vice President for Student Life at Furman University. She has oversight for the Student Affairs Division and reports directly to the President. Specifically, Carson has primary direction for all strategic and capital planning within Student Life and works with University Development on divisional and student experience fundraising. She serves on the President’s cabinet and staff with the Provost the Board of Trustees’ Student Experiences and Outcomes Committee. She co-led with the Provost the strategic plan currently implemented called “The Furman Advantage” and has been honored by the trustees to serve on two University Presidential search committees. Lastly, she has led and participated in all vice-presidential searches conducted under the current President’s tenure.
Academically, Connie is a First-Generation alumnus holding BS degrees in Biological Sciences and Science Education, as well as a Master’s in Counselor Education from North Carolina State University. She also holds an MBA from Wake Forest University.

Currently, she serves on the North Carolina State University Division of Academic and Student Affairs Student Success Board. Previously, she has served as ACUHO-I President (2006-07) and ACUHO-I Foundation Chair (2004-2006), as well as SEAHO President (1996). Connie has served on the faculty at RELI and NHTI. During her ACUHO-I Presidency, the association established the South African chapter and kicked off the first South African Housing Training Institute. She has also conducted external reviews for Housing and Student Affairs departments.

Prior to her current senior leadership position at Furman, which she has been in since 2008, she held numerous administrative positions at Wake Forest University including Assistant Vice President for Campus Planning and Services (overseeing multiple campus business operations, as well as space and master campus planning for the institution); Executive Director of Residential Services, Director of Residence Life/Housing and Dining, Associate Director of Residence Life and Housing, Area Coordinator and Director of Camps and Conferences.


Founded in 1826, Furman University is the oldest private university in South Carolina. It is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts and sciences universities, offering rigorous academics, broad research opportunities, a robust visual and performing arts program, and NCAA Division I athletics. Furman provides students a distinctive education in fine arts, humanities, social sciences, mathematics, the sciences, and select professional disciplines. Our strategic vision, The Furman Advantage, promises students an individualized four-year pathway facilitated by a team of mentors and infused with a rich and varied set of high-impact experiences outside the classroom that include undergraduate research, study away, internships, community-focused learning, and opportunities to engage across differences. Furman has 2,600 students and over 70 degrees of study. The average class size is 14, is ranked 9th by Princeton Review for the “Best Schools for Making an Impact,” 92%of students participate in internships and/or undergraduate research, and it has 155 clubs and organizations. Continually recognized as one of the most beautiful college campuses, Furman offers 750 acres of classic building design and park-like green space for all to enjoy.

University Leadership
Vision, Mission, and Values
Strategic Diversity Plan
Diversity Vision and Statement


Elizabeth Davis – President

Elizabeth Davis became Furman University’s 12th President on July 1, 2014. Under her leadership, the university has instituted The Furman Advantage, a distinctive vision for higher education that combines learning with immersive experiences outside the classroom, creating a personalized pathway that prepares students for lives of purpose, successful careers, and community benefit. The groundbreaking effort, which has received more than $52.5 million in support from The Duke Endowment, was launched in October 2016.

President Davis is a member of the Council of Presidents, an advisory group of college and university chief executives who provide guidance to the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges on governance issues in higher education. She is also a member of the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) Board of Directors.

Before coming to Furman, Dr. Davis spent 22 years at Baylor University in Texas, where she most recently held the Executive Vice President and Provost position. In addition to being a member of the accounting faculty at Baylor, she also served as Vice Provost for Financial and Academic Administration, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Business Programs, and Acting Chair of the Department of Accounting and Business Law. Before beginning her higher education career, she spent three years at Arthur Andersen & Co. in New Orleans.

Dr. Davis received her Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Baylor in 1984 and earned her PhD from Duke University in 1992.


Fall 2019

Total undergraduate enrollment was 2,629–60% women and 40% men. Six percent were African-American, 4% were Asian, 5% were Hispanic, 80% were white, and 3% were multiracial or other. International student representation was 2%. The entering first-year class for 2019 was composed of 390 women and 262 men, of whom 4.3% were African-American, 2.9% were Asian, and 4.4% were Hispanic. International representation was 2.6% percent. The student body was represented by 48 states and more than 22 countries.

Benefits Overview


  • Medical Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Vision Care Insurance
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Health Savings Account
  • Life Insurance
  • Disability Plans
  • Retirement Plans
  • Wellness Program
  • Education Benefits

For more information:


An award-winning city, Greenville and the surrounding area is the third-largest urban area in South Carolina and the fastest growing. Nationally recognized for our urban development, sustainability, beauty, food and campus, Greenville continues to top lists of destinations to visit. Our city has the highest foreign manufacturing investment per capita in America, with Fortune 500 companies like BMW, General Electric and Michelin leading the way. With several hundred restaurants, music and theater and arts venues, Greenville has gained recognition in various national publications such as CNN Money, which ranked Greenville as one of the “Top 10 Fastest Growing Cities in the U.S.” Conveniently located in the Southeast, Greenville’s bustling downtown is minutes from the Blue Ridge Mountains, beaches, other small towns and big cities.

Application & Nomination


The review of applications will begin immediately, and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to Dell D. Robinson at or Anne-Marie Kenney at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Furman University website at

Furman is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty and staff. The University aspires to create a community of people representing a multiplicity of identities, including gender, race, religion, spiritual belief, sexual orientation, geographic origin, socioeconomic background, ideology, worldview, and varied abilities.