After fifteen years at HACC’s Lancaster campus, Warren Bair, the Director of Student Life and Multicultural Programming, will be leaving on June 30th. Bair is personable, helpful, and focuses on what’s important: connecting people. Whether it was connecting students to a resource or to a layer of support, Bair networked and used his natural positive outlook to motivate those around him.With his goal oriented agenda, Bair created a learning environment that may not be covered in a course. However, through clubs and events, it allowed students to navigate real world situations by being engaged and supported.
Bair, originally from York, attended East StroudsburgUniversity of Pennsylvania and received his undergraduate degree in Parks and Recreation. He interned at a fitness center organizing activities at Four Seasons Sports Complex. After his internship, he was a life guard until he moved to Massachusetts, where he worked closely with incarcerated youths for a year. Bair returned to Pennsylvania for a position working in corporate fitness for International Signal Core. For five years, he planned activities around health and wellness by organizing leagues and fitness classes, as well as, company outings and social events. When the company merged, Bair decided to pursue his masters at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Physical Education. Soon after, he interned at the University of Miami in Florida in their development office, where he assisted in fundraising and guest relations for a year. He returned to Lancaster to work closely with troubled youth that had MH/MR (mental health/mental retardation) issues and helped to integrate them into society and the workplace. When he took the position at HACC Lancaster Campus, the experience and skills he attained at every stop in his journey enriched his ability to assist and support the students at HACC.
Bair is a natural motivator and likes to see all of HACC’s students be successful. For first generation college students, it can feel overwhelming. To this, Bair encourages any student struggling to reach out. The faculty is here to encourage and “mentor good decisions”, said Bair. He feels that education can be a vital piece that breaks the cycle of poverty and can be a game changer for one’s future.
Staying connected and involved is a major part of what Bair advocates. Co-curricular programs provide experiences outside the classroom and help students learn to open up and try new activities. He has enjoyed watching students actively taking a step into a something completely new. “We’d love for all HACC students to jump in and get involved.” His motto is, “You can DO it,” from the Water Boy, which seems to embody his pom-poms-up attitude.
Bair considers Jackie Bareuther, currently a counselor at the HACC York campus, along with Former Dean, Mike Klunk, mentors of his during the time he spent at HACC. Bair said,”former Dean Mike Klunk was a great example of a leader that was connected to the community and truly interested in doing what was best for our students, and as a result was very successful at leading our campus until he retired.” Bair looked up to him and appreciated his support throughout the beginning of his time at HACC. Along with this, Bair stated that Bareuther offered him much direction during his time as Director of Student Life and Multicultural Programming, which he was grateful to have.
Bair expresses some concern, as anyone would, when transitioning into the job market, but his family keeps him going. He loves watching his children make friends and explore their interests. Bair spends his spare time working on his house and honey-do-list, but on a personal level, being outdoors is where he unwinds. He finds that a few rounds of golf help him recharge and stay connected to what he values. “Most golfers enjoy the sport for the social aspect,” commented Bair. However, he finds that the manicured landscapes and the beauty of nature are what give him peace and comfort.
As this chapter comes to a close, Bair would like to express gratitude, “for all of the number of faculty and staff on the Lancaster Campus and as well as college-wide who were always willing to assist when I didn’t know what to do or needed help to make things happen.”
Bair’s life experiences and genuine commitment to students are what really made him an asset to HACC’s Lancaster Campus and students who knew him. He will surely be missed.