Whether they’re arriving in Charleston for the first time or returning to campus after years away, these new staff members are thrilled to be here – and the College of Charleston is thrilled to have them! Please welcome these new colleagues to the Cougar family!

Jenna Boyer

Jenna Boyer, Athletics

Jenna Boyer
Assistant Athletic Trainer, Department of Athletics

Background: I grew up in Reston, Virginia, which is about 30 minutes outside of the D.C. area. I earned my bachelor of science in athletic training from the University of Alabama in 2020. During that time, I assisted the university’s athletic teams, including men’s and women’s swim and dive, rowing, football and cheerleading and dance, as well as gaining experience as a student intern during the summer of 2019 for the University of Connecticut. Following my undergraduate degree, in 2020–2021, I served as a certified intern athletic trainer for Florida State University’s campus recreation department, providing coverage for 37 athletic clubs and 80 intramural sports. Continuing my education, I earned my master of science in kinesiology from Augusta University in 2023. As a graduate assistant athletic trainer, I primarily worked with the women’s volleyball team and assisted the tennis, softball and baseball teams. Additionally, I provided seasonal coverage for the Georgia Soul semi-professional men’s basketball team during their 2021–2022 season. In my final semester of graduate work, I completed an educational internship with Augusta University Medical Center’s orthopedic department, assisting the supervising physician’s clinical and surgical teams.

Interests: I enjoy going to the beach, spending time with friends, listening to live music and being able to stay active with my dog. I can’t wait to explore all the fun things that Charleston has to offer!

Looking Forward: I’m excited to work and learn from such an amazing athletic training staff! It’ll be great to be able to contribute to the unique culture that makes CofC so special.

Casey Burdette

Casey Burdette, REACH Program

Casey Burdette
Sophomore Cohort Support Coordinator, REACH Program

Background: I am originally from Fountain Inn, South Carolina. After completing undergraduate study at Clemson University (’08), I met my lovely wife, Carolyn, and moved to Gaithersburg, Maryland, where I could pursue a passion for education. After six years of working as a coach and paraprofessional at the high school level, I eventually returned to school to earn an M.S. from Johns Hopkins University (’19) and returned to teach high school for the next three years. During that time, my wife and I welcomed two amazing daughters into the world. Though a difficult decision, when the opportunity came to relocate and return to our home state, we decided to pack up and head to Charleston, a city that has always been dear to our hearts. After spending a year as a stay-at-home father, I am both honored and eager to have the opportunity to impact students at the post-secondary level.

Interests: My faith and family are both very important to me. I also love the outdoors and trying new things. This area has an amazing collection of parks and public access points, so I can certainly be found on any given weekend with my family, searching for shark teeth, shells, fossils or anything else the tides might bring to the beaches around the Charleston area!

Looking Forward: First and foremost, I am looking to help make a meaningful, lasting impact on the students whom I serve. I am looking forward to walking with them down their path, providing knowledge, strategies, tools and encouragement to live an active, independent and self-determined life. Secondly, I am looking forward to collaborating with a truly interdisciplinary team, whose diverse talents and backgrounds are sure to provide a wealth of perspectives and creative problem-solving strategies necessary to maximize our lasting impact on students.

Kendall Cage

Kendall Cage, Equal Opportunity Programs

Kendall Cage
Assistant Director of Employee Experience and Success, Office of Equal Opportunity Programs

Background: I grew up between the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in Texas before moving to Charlotte, North Carolina. Before coming to the College, I was living in the D.C. metro area and attending graduate school at George Mason University.

Interests: I love sports! Particularly basketball and football. You can catch me every Sunday watching the Kansas City Chiefs playing – and, if we win, you’ll see me on campus sporting bright red! Winter and spring are both dedicated to basketball season. I plan on spending a lot of my free time watching the basketball teams here play.

Looking Forward: I am most looking forward to seeing the work that we as employees put in to impact the lives of those who come across the College – from students and their parents to alumni and visitors who may be coming back to visit.

Nicole Chapman

Nicole Chapman ’14, Health and Human Performance

Nicole Chapman ’14
Assistant to the Dean, Department of Health and Human Performance

Background: Although not born here, I’ve been lucky to call Charleston home for the past 25 years. And not only am I an alum of the College (B.S. in public health), but also of the Department of Health and Human Performance, in which I now currently work. From here, I went on to study at Emory University in Atlanta and then at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, where I received my master of public health in health policy and management. Prior to working at the College, I worked in an administrative capacity, both in early childhood/elementary education and in health care.

Interests: I’m very much a book nerd and love to read in my spare time. I also love photography – mainly landscape and nature, but on occasion you can find me capturing special moments for friends and family. And although I don’t do these things quite as much as I’d like, I love to bake, travel and experience different cultures and people – and a good boat/beach day.

Looking Forward: Everyone I’ve met has been so kind and willing to help get me transitioned into my new role, so I’m looking forward to the endless opportunities to meet, work with and learn from such amazing people. I’m also thrilled to work for my former (and now current) department while it’s making transitions into its own school – to know where the department has been and to see where it’s going, and to be apart of that growth, is going to be an exciting and rewarding experience!

Casey Courtney

Casey Courtney, Academic Advising and Planning Center

Casey Courtney
Academic Advisor, Academic Advising and Planning Center

Background: I am from Boone, North Carolina. Prior to coming to work at the College of Charleston, I was the director of Esports and club sports recruitment at Lees-McRae College

Interests: It’s really important to me to get outside each day. Whether its playing rec. sports, hiking, rock climbing or longboarding, I genuinely just enjoy all types of activity.

Looking Forward: I’m looking forward to getting to know students and helping people discover their own strengths and goals. Academic advising is such a unique part of the collegiate experience and can help people discover things they may not have even known were options for the future!

Kyle Denzel

Kyle Denzel, Athletics

Kyle Denzel
Deputy Director of Athletics, Department of Athletics

Background: I am originally from Chicago. I attended Marquette University. I have had prior stops working in sports marketing at the University of Virginia, University of Michigan and the Tennessee Titans. My family and I moved to Charleston five years ago. I have been working with the College of Charleston Athletics Department for the past five years as a third-party contractor.

Interests: We love Charleston. My family enjoys boating, going to the beach, biking, walking our dogs and dining out at the many incredible Charleston restaurants. We enjoy the casual lifestyle on Daniel Island. I am an avid golfer and especially enjoy the golf courses on Kiawah.

Looking Forward: I look forward to working with the talented and passionate Athletics Department staff and assisting with the mission to provide an exceptional student-athlete experience for every student. And, I look forward to working with donors, sponsors and members of the Charleston community to increase our revenue and resources so our teams can compete for championships.

Catherine Edler

Catherine Edler, Disability Services

Catherine “Cat” Edler ’85
Assistant Director of Disability Services, Center for Disability Services

Background: I am home! I am a CofC alumna. I met my husband on the lawn in front of Randolph Hall on our freshman orientation day and, years later, walked across the graduation stage with my degree in elementary and special education. I worked with Charleston County School District until my husband’s job took us to Virginia. Between work and our son’s swim team schedule, I earned a master’s degree in special education at Hampton University and a post-master’s certificate in educational administration and leadership from George Washington University. I have worked as a teacher and administrator in pre-K-12 education for 38 years and am very excited to return home to the College in this position.

Interests: I enjoy cooking, being with family and traveling. Growing up, our dad instilled a love of the ocean and fishing in us. I look forward to doing that again now that we are back on the coast. I love turtles and want to join a volunteer turtle patrol. I enjoy visiting our son in Colorado and relaxing at home with our dogs and cat.

Looking Forward: I look forward to reacquainting myself with the College, getting to know colleagues and supporting students. I am excited to explore the changes in the city and being a member of the Center for Disability Services team. I am very excited to be back home at the College, giving back where my undergraduate years started the foundation of my career in education.

Jameea Gibbs

Jameea Gibbs, Public Safety

Jameea Gibbs
Public Safety Officer, Department of Public Safety

Background: I am from Folkston, Georgia. I was a tanker in the military, received an honorable discharge and became a security officer.

Interests: Helping people is the most important thing to me because I feel like helping people helps me. I love to play my instruments and learn how to play new instruments. I like to try new things in my spare time or read, bowl, go to the beach, etc.

Looking Forward: I hope to help as many people as I can while I’m at CofC and to build new relationships with the people and my coworkers.

Lauren Graf

Lauren Graf, Residence Life

Lauren Graf
Residence Hall Director (Warren Place), Department of Residence Life

Background: I graduated from the University of Kentucky in 2021 with a bachelor of arts in Spanish literature and culture. Shortly after, I began faculty recruitment for the Markey Cancer Center and College of Medicine at UK. After learning I enjoyed working with students, I sought employment at Transylvania University in the Office of Alumni and the Office of Student Life. I am currently pursuing my master of education in higher education administration at Texas Tech University and intend to pursue a Ph.D. My dream is to be the dean of students at a thriving university.

Interests: In my spare time I love to play golf, scuba dive and try new restaurants.

Looking Forward: I am looking forward to being a part of such a historic university in a vibrant and lively city.

Nicole Lenez

Nicole Lenez, Residence Life

Nicole Lenez
Director of Residence Life, Department of Residence Life

Background: I am originally from Bloomfield, New Jersey. I completed my undergrad degree in history at Roanoke College, went to Clemson University for my M.Ed., and am ABD in the Ed.D. program at University of Lynchburg. I spent most of my career at Virginia Colleges (Ferrum, Roanoke, JMU) and have served in many residence life positions. Outside of residence life, I was a chapter advisor for a Panhellenic organization and a hall director for Semester at Sea, and I worked professionally in Title IX and dean of students work. Most recently I am coming from Appalachian State in Boone, North Carolina, where I served as the senior associate director of residence life.

Interests: I love exploring and traveling! I am also a dog mom (4-year-old goldendoodle and 10-year-old corgi/hound mix), auntie to two amazing nieces (1 and 2.5 years old), a novice potter, a TV enjoyer and a sports fan.

Looking Forward: Everyone has been so welcoming and kind, and the residence life team is amazing! I am excited to work with this community of people.

Emilie O'Connor

Emilie O’Connor, Controller’s Office

Emilie O’Connor
Accountant/Fiscal Analyst II, Controller’s Office

Background: I’ve just moved to Charleston from Tallahassee, Florida. While there, I worked at FSU as an administrator, first for their College of Music as the HR representative, then for the College of Law as their fiscal director. Before Tallahassee, I lived in Danville, Kentucky, which is where I got my undergraduate degrees at Centre College in economics and finance and in music.

Interests: The reason I first went to Tallahassee before I started working full time was to earn my master of music in voice performance, which I finished back in 2019, so I suppose one could say I really love music and singing (all sorts, but I’m trained to sing opera primarily). Beyond that, I also do ceramics, crochet and a little bit of creative writing. I love fantasy and supernatural media and playing video games like Stardew Valley, The Legend of Zelda, Animal Crossing and Pokemon.

Looking Forward: I’m really looking forward to getting to know a new community of people and learning the systems here. In my previous roles, I worked “on site” for areas, so I’m interested in learning how operations run from the “central” side.

Pamela Shumway

Pamela Shumway, Financial Aid

Pamela Shumway ’93
Customer Service Manager, Office of Financial Assistance and Veterans Affairs

Background: I am originally from the Chicago, Illinois, suburbs, but graduated with a biology degree from CofC in 1993. I have been working as the employee benefits specialist and work comp coordinator for West Aurora School District in Aurora, Illinois, for the past five years. I also used my degree to work at the Living Desert in Palm Desert, California, as an animal keeper and at Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield, Illinois, as the assistant animal nutritionist.

Interests: I have three college-age children: two girls and one boy. The two youngest are adopted and were born in Ethiopia. My twin sister and I were adopted, so adopting was important to me. We found our birth family six years ago!!! Also, I am a foodie! Not only do I love trying new restaurants, I also enjoy cooking. I have been known to decorate some beautiful cakes. I am looking forward to kayaking, sailing (I learned to sail while attending CofC) and spending time at the beautiful South Carolina beaches. I am not going to miss the Chicago winters!

Looking Forward: I love CofC and I am grateful to be able to help students who are attending here with their financial aid process. I also think CofC’s campus is gorgeous and look forward to walking around campus and the historic district in my spare time.

Alexis Simpson

Alexis Simpson, Student Life

Alexis Simpson
Assistant Director of Student Life for Facilities and Operations, Office of Student Life

Background: For the last seven years, I have lived in Boone, North Carolina. I attended Appalachian State University and then began working as a facility coordinator at the Plemmons Student Union and Legends on campus shortly after graduating. Legends holds a special place in my heart because it was a very unique night club for students that was student-run, so there were always fun events that I was able to experience. I got to see a lot of different bands perform, club events and guest speakers in my time working there. I’ve always enjoyed working on campus as a student employee and on the professional staff, because there’s a strong sense of community and many campus resources available to everyone.

Interests: About a year and half ago, I started knitting, so I really enjoy doing that in my free time. I also really enjoy movies and television, so I spend a lot of time with my dog watching something on the television or going to the movie theater. I enjoy drinking a nice cold Coca-Cola, going to antique stores and reading a good book every now and then.

Looking Forward: I’m most looking forward to exploring the campus as well as the city! There seems to be so many pockets of communities and tons of things to do, so I am excited to explore the area!

Hannah Venable

Hannah Venable, Hispanic Studies

Hannah Venable
Administrative Assistant, Department of Hispanic Studies and the Program in Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Background: I am a recent graduate from UNC-Chapel Hill, and I moved to Charleston last year. I have a dual degree in history and public policy, and I worked for a local law office for the past year. I am a Tarheel through and through, and I look forward to debates with South Carolina grads on who the real “Carolina” is.

Interests: Reading! I was a history major, so anything historical instantly makes me want to pick it up. (But buying books and reading books are two different hobbies in my opinion.) I also love the movies, Marvel specifically, and anything Taylor Swift related (so quirky and unique).

Looking Forward: I am really looking forward to getting to know other people on campus and integrating myself in the CofC community! I love meeting new people and diving into new cultures, so this opportunity makes me really excited for my future here!

Spencer Ward

Spencer Ward, Teacher Education

Spencer Ward ’15
Office Manager, Department of Teacher Education

Background: I grew up in Concord, Massachusetts. I moved to South Carolina, where I attended the College of Charleston and earned a degree in middle grades education. I taught for six years in local Title 1 schools. In 2021, I began a Ph.D. in education, specializing in learning, instruction and innovation.

Interests: I enjoy spending time outdoors kayaking, walking and exploring.

Looking Forward: I am excited to collaborate and learn with my esteemed colleagues!

Sidney Woram

Sidney Woram, Provost’s Office

Sidney Woram
Associate Director, Office of the Provost

Background: I grew up in Maryland but am coming to CofC from the University of Virginia, where I recently earned my doctorate in classics.

Interests: I enjoy spending time with my husband and our two cats. During the pandemic I learned how to needlepoint, and it has become my new obsession. In my free time, you can find me reading, walking and working on needlepoint.

Looking Forward: I’m excited to work with fantastic students, meet dedicated and friendly colleagues, and enjoy the campus’ Southern charm!