Head and shoulders shot of Fred McCall with blurred background
Office of the President

Announcing Widener’s New Vice President of Student Engagement and Transformation and Dean of Students

Widener University has named Fred C. McCall as its first vice president of student engagement and transformation. McCall, who will also serve as dean of students, will begin his new duties July 1, and comes to Widener from the University of Illinois, Chicago, where he has served as executive associate vice chancellor and dean of students.

“I am very excited to welcome Dr. McCall to Widener University,” said President Stacey Robertson. “He is a strategic collaborator and a student-centered educator with a deep commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in higher education. I look forward to the impact his leadership will have on Widener students’ success.” 

During his five-year career at the University of Illinois, Chicago, McCall was focused on student engagement, advocacy and support, and professional development. He led a variety of areas including the Center for Student Involvement, Commuter and Off Campus Life, Fraternity and Sorority life, Career Services, New Student and Family Programs, and Community Standards. He previously served as assistant dean and director of the Office of Student Engagement at California State University, San Bernardino, and held leadership roles at the University of California-Berkeley, Purdue University, the University of South Florida and Tusculum College.

“I am thrilled to join the Widener community and partner with students, faculty, and staff to continue the transformative work of belonging, engagement, and student success,” McCall said. “I am looking forward to forging deep connections with the Widener and Chester communities. The university has a long tradition of education and service, and I can’t wait to positively contribute to this important legacy.”

During his tenure at University of Chicago, McCall co-chaired several committees, such as the chancellor’s committee on advancing racial equity that provided key strategic recommendations to the institution. He also led several successful initiatives to impact student engagement and campus culture, including bias reporting tools and a variety of collaborative efforts with the university’s Office of Diversity and Office of Access and Equity.

McCall will lead Student Engagement and Transformation at Widener, a new unit that includes the offices of Student Engagement, Student Living, Athletics and Pride Recreation, Well-being and Belonging, and Student and Campus Services. The unit is designed to spark innovation and enhance the university’s holistic approach to student engagement. In his role, McCall will bring new student-focused leadership to the President’s Leadership Team and reinforce Widener’s student-centered culture of belonging by championing above-and-beyond responsiveness, care, and creativity.

McCall received his Ph.D. in higher education and student affairs from Indiana University, Bloomington. He received his master’s in college student personnel administration from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and his bachelor of arts in psychology from Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

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