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Division of Student Affairs Annual Report 2018-19

Office of the Dean of Students


Students are the heart of Ohio University. We advocate for students, coordinate response to student crisis and provide outreach and engagement to parents and families. We advance the University mission of supporting the intellectual and personal development of our students through ongoing advocacy and care.



weekly Cats' Cupboard users


of Emergency Microgrants impacted retention


in budget


in expenses


Kathy Fahl speaking at Cats' Cupboard grand reopening

The Office of the Dean of Students (DOS) reorganized in 2018-19 to focus on serving students struggling with food, housing and other basic needs. In this effort, a new Assistant Dean of Students was hired in August to direct and remain dedicated to this work.


Student shopping the Career Closet

The basic needs program also includes a meal bank program collaboration with Culinary Services, Career Closet collaboration with the Career and Leadership Development Center, a pilot Cap and Gown program in collaboration with Event Services and an Emergency Microgrants program. 

Bobcats Helping Bobcats program logos

All DOS basic needs efforts were branded under the umbrella "Bobcats Helping Bobcats", in partnership with the Student Affairs Communication and Marketing team. This brand and the accompanying visual identity included Cats’ Cupboard, the newly renamed, refurbished and relocated food pantry located in Baker University Center.

Cats' Cupboard food pantry

Cats’ Cupboard documented an average of 110 users per week. Over the course of the year, more than 18,000 pounds of food were donated to the program. New space on the fifth floor of Baker University Center has been secured and renovated to expand Cats’ Cupboard with a grand re-opening scheduled for Fall 2019.

Campus buildings

The Office of the Dean of Students launched a pilot Emergency Microgrants program designed to assist OHIO students facing financial difficulty due to emergency situations or one-time hardships. Since January 2019, 57 students applied for funding with 41% of them receiving grants. The average award was $718 and 82% of Emergency Microgrants impacted student retention.

person swiping in to Cats' Cupboard food pantry

Following a long history of division collaboration, DOS officially took over management of Cats’ Cupboard during the academic year. In the fall, DOS successfully secured 501(c)3 status from the Ohio University Foundation Board of Trustees, which enabled food purchase from the Southeast Ohio Food Bank. The status also qualifies the program for grant funding.