Foley, who has worked at UW-Stout for six years, focuses every day on supporting students.
“I spend a great deal of my time providing crisis response to students in distress, working with students when they need social or academic support and either helping out at my level or referring them up to those who need it,” Foley said.
“I enjoy helping improve someone else’s quality of life. If someone has a less than ideal quality of life or living situation, they might not be at their best self to participate fully in class. It’s nice to help folks and give them resources or advice to get them to a place where they feel they learn and enjoy their time in college,” he said.
Foley has developed two manuals for student staff in University Housing, was part of the implementation team for the EAB Navigate student retention program and is past chair of the campus Safety and Workers Compensation committee.
He has a master’s in higher education administration from Rowan University in Glassboro, N.J., and a bachelor’s in political science and communication studies from Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. He is a native of East Stroudsburg, Pa.
“Ian sees the broader picture of campuswide mechanisms and opportunities to better serve our students. He has an analytical mindset balanced with an understanding of human dynamics that leads to positive relationships and positive results for our students,” said Darrin Witucki, director of University Centers and former WCPA board member.
Jacqueline Bonneville, associate dean of students, said Foley “demands we be better for our students. He continually thinks about ways we can do our work differently, reach more students and be more efficient in the work we do. He doesn’t shy away from difficult conversations and disagreements. Understanding that helps us get to the best solution. There is nothing Ian won’t volunteer to do. We could use more Ians in this world.”
Foley will begin a new role soon at UW-Stout as compliance specialist and youth and minors protection coordinator.
This is the second time in three years a UW-Stout employee has received the Nora McGuire Outstanding Professional honor. Adam Ludwig, director of University Housing, won in 2021.
WCPA formed nearly 50 years ago. Its mission is to provide “professional development for higher education professionals serving students in Wisconsin,” according to its website.