June 29, 2015
Military Family Research Institute Appoints New Director of Education and Employment
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The Military Family Research Institute announced on Monday, June 29, that Lauren Runco Williams has joined the organization to lead its growing education and employment initiatives.
Williams comes with a wealth of experience in the student veteran space, having previously served as the Director of Military and Veteran Services at Marywood University, as well as the VA Certifying Official on its Scranton, Pennsylvania campus. She also draws from her personal experience as a military family member who understands firsthand the challenges that service members face as they enter higher education institutions and workplaces.
As MFRI's new director of education and employment, Williams will continue research efforts and build partnerships with institutions of higher education, as well as national employers.
"I am excited to join the leadership team and look forward to further developing MFRI's programs to improve the lives of military members and veterans as they transition from active duty to other educational and professional pursuits," she said.
Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth, director of MFRI, said "Lauren's breadth of experience and training within higher education institutions, as well as her clear dedication to and understanding of the military and veteran community will allow MFRI to engage new frontiers in our work with educators, administrators and employers."
While at George Mason University, Williams created "Beyond GI Joe: The Contemporary College Student Veteran," to teach student affairs professionals best practices when working with student veterans on campus. She has presented at multiple regional and national conferences.
Williams currently serves on the board of GI Jobs Military Friendly Schools, and the Pennsylvania Student Veteran Coalition. In addition, she serves as the NASPA Region II Representative of the Veterans Knowledge Community and in March 2015 was named the chair-elect of the Veterans Knowledge Community. She has received a number of honors, including the Department of the Army Commander's Award for Public Service, and the "Supra et Extra" award from the NASPA Veterans Knowledge Community.
Williams holds a bachelor's degree in international relations from the University of Scranton and a master's in higher education administration from Marywood University.