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Heather Downs
Heather  Downs

Director of Academics-Olympic Sports

Heather Downs joined the Virginia Academic Affairs staff in 2013. In 2015 she assumed the role of director of academics for Olympic sports. She supports the academic services for all Olympic sports teams and leads efforts in career development programming for the department. She monitors eligibility, progress toward degree and the individualization of academic interventions across all Olympic sports. She serves as the academic coordinator for the men’s lacrosse, softball and women’s soccer teams, supporting them directly to reach their academic potential. As the lead staff member on the career and personal development pillar, she collaborates with staff, employers, and partners on grounds to provide a range of opportunities for student-athletes' career development and transition into the professional world.

Downs came to UVA with a rich background in student affairs management experience. She worked in the Office of Student Life at California for two years, managing the development and implementation of campus leadership programs. She previously worked in student support services at Northern Colorado as the facilitator of academic advising, specifically with high-risk students.

Downs graduated from Florida in 1999 with a degree in environmental engineering. She received her master's degree in student affairs in higher education from Colorado State in 2002.


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