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The Grad Post, Spring 2023, Matt Dunbar, Director of Graduate Enrollment

Matt Dunbar began his career as an academic advisor at Georgia Southern University in 2013 after working in college athletics. He transitioned to graduate education in the College of Education (COE) at Georgia Southern in 2016 and became the Director of the COE’s Graduate Academic Services Center (GASC) in 2018 where he served for 5 years.

Matt and his GASC team focused on processes related to recruitment, admissions, and advising of prospective and current graduate students in the College of Education, which has the largest number of graduate students at Georgia Southern. As director, Matt led his GASC team in identifying ways to advance enrollment in the College through student recruitment and retention strategies, and he collaborated with college administrators and faculty to implement plans realizing enrollment growth of about 15% from 2018 to 2022. His team emphasized a student-centered approach, ensuring students felt supported throughout the entirety of their graduate experience through implementation of a staff advising model with staff advising more than 70% of graduate students in the college. 

Originally from California, Matt graduated from Washington State University and Florida State University before settling in Richmond Hill, Georgia with his wife Catherine, a graduate of Georgia Southern’s Counselor Education program and current school counselor in Bryan County. Matt and Catherine have a daughter named Alice who will turn 1 in March, in addition to two dogs named Copper and Joni.


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