Katherine Karraker has been named West Virginia University’s associate provost for graduate academic affairs, Provost Michele Wheatly announced today (May 23). The appointment is effective immediately.

Karraker was appointed the interim associate provost in August 2012. In this role, she oversees graduate academic program planning and performance review and oversees the Office of Graduate Education and Life. The office reports administratively to the Office of the Provost through the Office of the Vice President for Research in keeping with the institution’s goal of strengthening its research programs.

“Professor Karraker has excelled in teaching, research and service at West Virginia University,” Vice President for Research Fred L. King said. “She has been an excellent mentor to her own graduate students during the course of her career. A seasoned administrator, professor Karraker understands what it takes to build and sustain academic programs of the highest quality.

“I know that under Dr. Karraker’s leadership, our graduate programs will achieve even greater prominence.”

Karraker does indeed hope to continue to see WVU graduate programs flourish.

“WVU has a number of strong graduate programs and we attract many excellent students to complete their graduate training here,” she said. “My hope is that we can provide the support our graduate programs need to recruit and train stellar students, and to help our students get the most out of their graduate education so that they can go on to successful careers.”

Karraker earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Colorado and both a master’s degree and a doctorate in developmental psychology from Michigan State University. She joined the faculty at WVU in 1985 after teaching at the State University of New York at Buffalo and has published extensively in the field of developmental psychology. Her research has been supported by grants from the March of Dimes, the WVU Faculty Senate and the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, where she is a professor and associate dean.

In nearly 30 years at WVU, Karraker has served the Department of Psychology and the Eberly College in a number of capacities. She directed psychology’s graduate training program for 14 years; was director of psychology’s undergraduate training program for 13 years; was coordinator of the Life-Span Developmental Psychology Doctoral Program for two years; and was associate chair of psychology for two years.

She is also the former acting director of the Center for Women’s Studies at WVU and a former associate dean for undergraduate studies in the Eberly College. Immediately prior to stepping in as interim associate provost for graduate academic affairs, Karraker took on as-needed administrative duties in the office of undergraduate academic affairs.

“I am looking forward to continuing the good work of the Office of Graduate Education and Life and Office of Graduate Academic Affairs to enhance WVU’s graduate education mission,” she said.

Provost Wheatly is confident that Karraker is “exactly the right person for the job. We are tremendously fortunate to have Dr. Karraker as a member of our academic leadership team,” she said. “Her commitment to this University is exceptional. The Office of Graduate Education and Life will continue to make great strides in serving our graduate students under her leadership.”

Karraker replaces Jonathan Cumming, who announced last summer he would not seek reappointment.



CONTACT: University Relations/News

Follow @WVUToday on Twitter.