Dr. Odell served as the College’s interim president from 2003-2005, and led the transition of Potomac State to a fully integrated division of WVU. Following a national search, he was selected as the College’s first campus provost and began his service in that role in July 2005.
During his tenure, enrollment at the College has grown from 1,330 to 1,836 students a 38 percent increase. Private giving also increased with more than $3 million in new gifts being received by the WVU Foundation to benefit Potomac State.
In addition, more than $25 million in capital improvements were made to the campus including the construction of University Place, a residential complex that houses more than 350 students and includes two dining venues and a fitness center.
WVU Provost Michele Wheatly said Odell will be missed: “Dr. Odell has provided strong and stable leadership to Potomac State. The College has a solid foundation and is well positioned for the future.”
She added, “In addition, he and his wife, Cathy, have been extremely community-minded and popular and active leaders in the Keyser community.”
Prior to coming to Potomac State, Odell was an associate professor of agricultural and environmental education on WVU’s main campus and also served as associate dean in what is now the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design.
He earned a doctorate from The Ohio State University, a master’s degree from The Pennsylvania State University, a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia and an associate’s degree from State University of New York at Alfred.
Wheatly said a search for Potomac State’s next campus provost will begin this fall.
Odell said his future plans remain open, but he is a tenured professor and may return to teaching.
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