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Olathe, Kan. Resident Selected to Lead Admissions Effort at UCM

By Jeff Murphy, July 25, 2016

WARRENSBURG, MO – Playing an important role in recruitment activities that support the continued growth of the University of Central Missouri , Justin (J.D.) Gragg, Olathe, Kan., has been named Director of Admissions.

Gragg’s appointment was announced today by Mike Godard, vice provost for enrollment management at UCM. The new admissions director joins the university Aug. 8.

“We are excited to have J.D. Gragg join our team at UCM," Godard said. "J.D.'s focus on relationship building, in addition to his data driven strategies in admissions, will elevate our overall enrollment management efforts and complement the synergism with respect to student success at UCM."

Gragg has nearly a decade of experience in higher education, having served since June 2013 as Articulation Development Coordinator at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kan. In this capacity, his vast duties have included creating and maintaining partnerships with all four-year universities in Missouri and Kansas; creating and maintaining articulation agreements with partner universities to facilitate the smooth transfer of students from JCCC to four-year institutions; organizing student success programs; and working with faculty and administrators to determine possible pathways for articulation of JCCC degrees and programs.

Additional experience in higher education includes a positon as Transfer Recruitment Manager with the Texas Tech University Office of Undergraduate Admissions in Lubbock, Texas; Assistant Director of Recruiting for the Texas Tech School of Law; and Senior Counselor/Prelaw Program Coordinator at the Texas Tech University Advising Center. He also served as Kaplan Center Manager in Lubbock, responsible for Kaplan test prep and admissions, and was a Kaplan LSAT instructor.

At JCCC, Gragg was co-creator and a leader in a groundbreaking partnership with the University of Kansas called the Degree Partnership Program. This program has elements of dual enrollment, dual advising, technology and resource sharing. While working at Texas Tech, he was part of the undergraduate admissions team that was responsible for helping the university receive status as a National Tier 1 Research Institution.

Commenting on his new role, Gragg noted, “I think there are amazing things happening at UCM right now with some amazing opportunities ahead. The beautiful campus, energetic and enthusiastic employees and students, and spirit of growth and innovation that I experienced on my visit have me incredibly excited for this opportunity.”

Gragg’s education includes a Bachelor of Science with majors in criminal justice and psychology from the University of Nebraska-Kearney, and a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership degree from Lubbock Christian University in Texas. He also is working on a Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership through a cooperative program between UCM and the University of Missouri-Columbia, the degree-granting institution. He hopes to finish his doctorate in 2018.


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