Fairmont State has announced that Dr. Phil Mason has been promoted to Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies. Mason served as Dean of the FSU College of Science and Technology from 2003 to 2005, until he was named as Interim Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies in August 2005.
This newly created position will have the overall responsibility for promoting and supporting the growth of the institution's sponsored programs and graduate offerings. Fairmont State is committed to the expansion of the external funding for both research and program development and improvement. Additionally, Fairmont State University wants to better serve the advanced educational needs of its service region by providing access to appropriate master degree programs. Mason will remain a member of the President's Cabinet.
"Phil's broad interest and experience will allow him to quickly develop the university's capabilities in research and graduate studies," said Fairmont State University President Daniel J. Bradley.
Mason joined the School of Science and Mathematics at Fairmont State as a Professor of Biology and its Chair in 1998. He served in this capacity until 2003 when he became the Dean of the College of Science and Technology. Prior to coming to Fairmont State, he was the Chair of the Department of Biology at Elon University in North Carolina. Mason taught at Unity College in Maine, where he was the Chair of the Division of Environmental Studies, and was also on the faculty at Berry College in Georgia.
Mason has taught a wide variety of courses and most enjoys vertebrate biology courses including ornithology and ecology. He has extensive experience in travel-abroad field courses, having taught tropical ecology in Jamaica, Costa Rica and Belize.
In the past several years, Mason has helped to develop and teach non-majors science courses that have increased relevance to students' lives and enhance their scientific literacy and civic engagement. He has supported the efforts of a number of faculty members in the College of Science & Technology who are committed to creating new learner-centered science courses for the university's Liberal Studies Program.
He has successful experience in grant writing with an emphasis on curriculum development, including awards from the National Science Foundation, NASA and the National Center for Science and Civic Engagement.
Mason received his Bachelor of Science degree in Wildlife Biology from the University of Massachusetts and earned his Master of Science in Wildlife Biology and his Ph.D. in Vertebrate Biology from Auburn University.
He resides in Morgantown with his wife Elaine. They have one son, Grover, and three grandchildren all of Cincinnati.