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First Presbyterian Church
Logan Branch College
Director of Admissions
Director of Administrations
Man High School
American College Testing
University of Charleston ( W.Va.
Community College Higher Education Administration
"We've encountered during the last two months, two inches of rain, two times within two hours," said Jim Harless, the Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Kenova.
KENOVA -- "We've encountered during the last two months, two inches of rain, two times within two hours," said Jim Harless, the Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Kenova.
Harless said the community is trying to fix a big mess after some quick rainfall Friday morning.
Dr. James W. Harless, director of admissions at Marshall University the past 30 years, is retiring effective Jan. 2, 2002, Provost Sarah Denman announced today."Marshall University owes a tremendous debt to Jim Harless," Denman said.Harless, 64, grew up in Charleston, W.Va., and Boone County, W.Va.He has been at Marshall since 1967, when he was named assistant director of admissions.He became director in 1971 after a brief stint as director of the freshman orientation program. Previously, Harless was a counselor at Man High School in Man, W.Va., from 1959 to 1963, and the first director of Logan Branch College – now Southern West Virginia Community College -- from 1963 to 1967. "I will always have a special place in my heart about my wonderful years working with thousands of students and staff members at Marshall University," Harless said. The Harless family has extensive ties with Marshall. "My mother attended Marshall in the early 1900s and my wife, Harriet, and I have degrees from Marshall," Harless said."Our children, Robin and Daniel, have both graduated from Marshall." A reception in Harless' honor, organized by Marshall's Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management departments, will take place at 3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14, in the Memorial Student Center's John Marshall Room. Harless received his bachelor's degree in Education from the University of Charleston (W.Va.) in 1959, his master's degree in Guidance and Counseling from Marshall in 1962, and his doctorate in Community College Higher Education Administration from Nova University in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., in 1976.He served as Secretary of the American College Testing (ACT) Program Board of Trustees from 1988 to 1994. Harless and his wife established a scholarship with the Marshall University Foundation, Inc., to offer financial assistance to students from West Virginia. "We have even purchased pre-paid scholarship programs for our grandchildren to attend Marshall," Harless said."I look forward to my retirement and also the opportunities to assist Marshall with the recruitment program." Harless, a Presbyterian lay minister, will stay busy preaching in West Virginia churches which are without fulltime ministers.He said 38 Presbyterian churches in the state do not have ministers. "It's what I always wanted to do," Harless said of preaching. He also will work part-time recruiting students to Marshall through the alumni association.During his spare time, Harless and his wife plan to travel. Denman said Harless will be missed at Marshall. The big plus with Jim is that it's one thing to do your job, it's another to love your job.Jim Harless loves his job.And it shows."###
Marshall Flashback: Dr. James 'Jim' Harless Dr. James "Jim" Harless graduated from Marshall University with a master,s degree in counseling in 1962 and spent the next 39 years working for the university. Lori Wolfe/The Herald-DispatchJim Harless, the former director of admissions at Marshall University, stands outside of the building he worked in for more than thirty years.Harless still lives in Huntington, and is a lay pastor for Kenova Presbyterian Church and vice president of the Marshall Alumni Association.Harless has vivid memories of his time at Marshall.He started out as director of the community college in Logan, W.Va., when professors from the Huntington campus piled into cars and drove to the Logan campus to teach classes, he said. "I guess I have lived the Marshall University story," Harless said."It,s been an important part of my life."He remembers Marshall obtaining university status in the 1960s. "This was an exciting time on campus," Harless said."People ran around wearing university signs."Harless also remembers the smallness of the campus.It only extended from 18th Street to 16th Street, he said.The stadium was not along 20th Street, and there was no Cam Henderson Center, he said.He also continues to remember the loss of a good friend and colleague in the 1970 plane crash by returning to campus each year on Nov. 14, he said. Harless retired as Director of Admissions in 2002 and still lives in Huntington.He is lay pastor for Kenova Presbyterian Church and vice president of the Marshall Alumni Association.
Jim Harless, director of administrations at Marshall University, stands outside of Old Main, the building he has worked in for more than 30 years.Harless will retire in January.HUNTINGTON -- No high school in West Virginia can hide from Jim Harless.It doesn't matter how deep into the hollows, how far from Main Street. "He knows every crook and cranny of West Virginia, in terms of where the schools are and where the students are," said John Thralls, vice chancellor for administration with the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, who has known Harless for decades.When Harless retires Jan. 2 after more than 30 years in the business, it will be a loss not only for Marshall University, but for the entire state, Thralls said.The university hosts a farewell reception for Harless at 3 p.m. Friday in the John Marshall Room of the Memorial Student Center."Marshall University owes a tremendous debt to Jim Harless," said Sarah Denman, provost and vice president for academic affairs.Harless -- whose mother, wife Harriett and two children attended Marshall -- first worked as a recruiter and then as an orientation director."They asked me to come on for a while, and here I am," Harless said."Never would I have wanted to come over that way, but I did, and I've enjoyed it ever since."During his tenure, he's watched enrollment grow from about 7,000 to more than 16,000 students.He's been instrumental in establishing new scholarships to help make college more affordable for hard-working students, helping expand scholarship funds from $200,000 per year to $1.5 million per year.Harless also had a role in getting the admission standards raised from a score of 17 to a 19 on the ACT admissions test.He said the average grade-point average of incoming freshmen has climbed from 2.96 to 3.3 since the standards were put into effect a couple years ago.Harless has put service above administrative convenience, Thralls said.Michelle Wicks, scholarship coordinator for the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, worked under Harless for six years as an adviser in the admissions office. But now is the time to slow down, Harless said. "I think it's time for me to be cautious about my health," he said."I'm going to miss the family of friends I have at Marshall, and seeing students walk through the door and trying to help them."He will continue to work part-time at the university, coordinating with alumni to serve as recruiters for Marshall at college fairs and events in other states.He also plans to work as a lay minister in the Presbyterian church, preaching at churches who need a minister for the week. Harless told his friend about his upcoming retirement and plans to become a minister.His friend told him he's already been preaching for years, only on a different subject -- the importance of college and the benefits of choosing Marshall University.