Katie Graffum to leave RWU

Kaylee Pugliese

Katie Graffum, assistant director of housing, is leaving her position in December for a position in student conduct at Becker College.

 Graffum has been with the university for three years. During her time, she was known most for handling roommate conflicts and pairing roommates for first-year students. Her last day in the office is Dec. 14, but she will be back for one day during winter break to tie loose ends with roommate situations.

Graffum said the things she will miss the most are the people, the connections she’s made and events like UFest.

 “As much as [UFest is] its own entity, I think the students when they leave are genuinely so appreciative,” she said. “The staff is not often together until 2 a.m. When the students are leaving, they’ll say things like, ‘this is my senior year’ and ‘I’m going to miss you’ and I will definitely remember that.”

The Housing Department faculty expressed how much they will miss Graffum around the office, and wish her all the best in her new role at Becker.

“Katie has been an integral human to the Department of Residence Life and Housing,” said Rach Pozerski, a coordinator of residence education. “She has created great relationships with the people around her as she is a very funny and transparent person. I know that I could always count on her for support or get advice from her.”

Theresa Capelo, associate director of housing, said she shares many memories with Graffum and really appreciates how successful she was in her position.

“She is easy to talk to, maintains a calm demeanor, and is a great conflict mediator,” said Capelo. She also says her funniest memory with Graffum goes back to Friday, Dec. 18, 2015. She said the office felt like a “ ghost town” since most people had left for the holidays after the department end of semester party.

 “I came in to get Katie keys for move-in, and to be sure she was set with payroll and Human Resources to start work right after the holidays,” she said. “Her husband Luke was [playing] a game on his phone which she found distracting. She shot him a look that needed no words; she could speak with her eyes. I just knew we would be great friends.”

Graffum also worked closely with students who worked in the office 

“I will miss working with Katie because of her positivity,” said senior Nikki Sparanzo, who worked closely with Graffum. “She always made the job fun, even when she was extremely busy.”

Graffum impacted both students and faculty members on campus.  She has helped many students work through their problems in their living situations by working on having better communication with them.

Upon Graffum’s departure, roommate conflicts and room changes will now be handled by the CORE of their building. The matching and pairing of first-year roommates will fall under the responsibilities of the person the Housing Department hires in her place. There is not yet a job posting, but Graffum says there will be one soon.

She was also the faculty advisor for Roger After Dark, which will now be handed over to Chris Higgins, the CORE of Stonewall. 

“There are still people here to help you,” said Graffum. “Tony [Montefusco] was a big personality and I meet with a lot of students, but that doesn’t mean things are going to fall through the cracks. [Students] are still supported in every way.”