Longtime West Virginia University administrator David Stewart, in keeping with the institution’s strategic partnership with the Royal University for Women, is taking a leave of absence to serve as president of the Bahraini school.
RUW was established in 2006 by WVU alumni in the Middle East with the mission of providing high quality education for women in the region.
Stewart, currently associate vice president for global strategy and international affairs, has helped lead WVU through tremendous growth in international enrollment and forged strong relationships with embassies and corporations around the world. Since 2010, he has coordinated the University’s activities in the Middle East, working with government agencies, industry and educational partners in the region.
“It has been my pleasure to help advance WVU’s international mission over the past eight years,” said Stewart, who came to the University in 1991 as assistant professor of English. “I look forward to being able to continue developing opportunities in the Middle East at the Royal University for Women, and strengthening the partnership between RUW and WVU.”
“David has been a tremendous leader throughout his time at West Virginia University,” William Brustein, vice president for global strategy and international affairs, said. “His contributions in student life and in international education have helped bring WVU to the spotlight, making us a model of success.”
President Gordon Gee credited Stewart’s “leadership and strategy” with helping WVU become a truly international university.
“He has been instrumental in helping promote WVU on a global scale. His efforts in the Middle East, particularly with our partner, the Royal University for Women in Bahrain, have helped to create countless opportunities and connections that benefit West Virginia University, and the State,” Gee said.
Anticipating Stewart’s departure, Amber Brugnoli, assistant dean for continuing legal education in the College of Law, joined the Office of Global Affairs as assistant vice president for global strategy and international affairs Monday. Brustein described the role as an ideal fit for Brugnoli.
“The Office of Global Affairs is committed to serving our students with their education, service and interning abroad; our faculty with their research, partnership development and global teaching; and our international students and scholars with their immigration needs and continued support and advice,” Brustein said.
“In order to truly support every member of our community and expand the scope of our offerings, we must continue to operate nimbly and effectively. Amber brings a wealth of relevant experience and expertise that will help us achieve this goal, and we’re glad to have her as part of our team.”
Brugnoli will oversee the unit’s operation, help meet the everchanging needs of the international student and scholar community, continue to grow education abroad and oversee the Intensive English Program.
Brugnoli earned bachelor's degrees in political science and psychology from WVU in 2001, and a law degree in 2004. After serving in the U.S. Air Force, she received a master’s in international relations from Troy University, and a master’s and PhD in political science from WVU.
She joined the University with WellWVU in 2009, then was in private practice from 2011 to 2013 when she returned to the University as assistant dean for career services in the College of Law. She was named assistant dean for continuing legal education in 2017.
“I have known Dr. Stewart for nearly 20 years, and have been privileged to watch him help guide WVU and its students through many challenges as he served numerous roles in both student life and academic affairs,” Brugnoli said. “David has been a visionary leader for the university and has mentored hundreds of students on their Mountaineer journey. It is an honor to be asked to step into his role and help strengthen WVU’s global presence.”
CONTACT: WVU University Relations
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