Steven Shirley Biography
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Steven W. Shirley, Ph.D.

Dr. Shirley became the 12th President of Valley City State University on July 1, 2008. Prior to this appointment, he was the Vice-President for Student Affairs at Dakota State University (DSU) in Madison, SD. Before DSU, Dr. Shirley was a business professor and Director of Learning Abroad at the University of Minnesota, Crookston (UMC). He has also taught at South Dakota State University and the University of North Dakota.

A native of Fargo, ND, Dr. Shirley earned his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Business Administration and PhD in Teaching and Learning: Higher Education, all from the University of North Dakota. At the time of his appointment to the VCSU presidency, William Goetz, Chancellor of the North Dakota University System commented, "Dr. Shirley has a strong understanding of what's important to students. His background clearly demonstrates that he is someone who can drive the growth of VCSU."

During his professional career, Dr. Shirley has served on the Region IV-West Advisory Board for NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators), and has presented on numerous occasions at regional and national conferences of NASPA, NAFSA (Association of International Educators), and ACBSP (Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs). Additionally, he is a member of the Valley City Rotary Club and previously served as club president of the Crookston, MN Rotary Club. Dr. Shirley also serves on the Valley City-Barnes County Economic Development Corporation.

President Shirley has a great interest in international education, and has long been a champion of encouraging students to study abroad. He has led student and faculty groups abroad on academic and cultural visits, and has taught English abroad to adult learners. Shirley's PhD dissertation, "The Gender Gap in Post-Secondary Study Abroad: Understanding and Marketing to Male Students," was published by the American Institute for Foreign Study Foundation.