June 08, 2012

Goodin named Disability Support Services director

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A Southern Illinois University Carbondale alumnus with a strong background in disability support services will become the next director of Disability Support Services at SIU Carbondale.

George (Sam) Goodin, currently assistant dean of students at the University of Michigan, will begin his new responsibilities on July 1, pending ratification by the SIU Board of Trustees.

 “We have a proud tradition of serving the needs of students with disabilities, and Sam will provide a level of expertise that will enable us to further enhance those services,” Chancellor Rita Cheng said.  “He is a well-respected professional and I look forward to his many contributions.”

Goodin said a return to SIU Carbondale brings him back to an area he considers home and where family members still reside.  It also brings him back to working directly in disability support services, which is a passion for him.

“Though I was delighted to be given the opportunity to broaden my experience by assuming the role of Assistant Dean of Students (at the University of Michigan), I have continued to maintain an active interest in serving students with disabilities,” he said.  “I regard this as an opportunity to continue working in a profession for which I have a long-held passion.”

Even while assistant dean of students, Goodin explained that he has made it a point to stay current on disability-related issues, trends and legal rulings.  He is on the editorial board for the “Journal on Postsecondary Education and Disability,” and he remains involved with the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD), a national organization for which he is a past president.

Before Goodin became assistant dean of students, he was director of Services for Students with Disabilities at Michigan beginning in 1992.  He was director of the Office for Students with Disabilities at California State University, Los Angeles from 1989 to 1992, and was director of Disabled Student Services and Veterans Affairs at Indiana University Bloomington from 1983 to 1989.  

His connection to SIU Carbondale includes several of his most important mentors, he said, including Ron Blosser, director of Disability Support Services while Goodin was a student.  He names Blosser as his “single most important mentor.”  Goodin later received an award named for Blosser, and he referred to that award as the one meaning most to him of all his professional accolades and awards.

At SIU Carbondale, Goodin was graduate assistant to the coordinator of specialized student services, a program coordinator and counselor at Touch of Nature camps for specialized populations, and even a van driver and wheelchair repairperson.  He holds both a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree from SIU Carbondale.   

In addition to experience with disability support services, Goodin has strong fiscal leadership credentials.  He has managed budgets in various capacities at Michigan, at AHEAD, and even as a graduate student at SIU Carbondale, where he wrote a grant for the Jackson Community Workshop in Murphysboro that provided start-up money for a group home.