Texas State’s director of Career Services will be keeping his title, but in a new setting: Qatar.
Curtis Schafer, director of Career Services, is leaving San Marcos after the month’s end to move to Qatar. There he will help establish a career services department at Qatar University, the only public university in the country.
Schafer said he will be a resident consultant to the university’s career services department, which is still fairly new. He will be there for two to three years mentoring the training staff and the native Qatari director, who is new to the field.
“I wasn’t looking to leave Texas State. I like it here,” Schafer said. “This job (in Qatar) just really intrigued me because of the cultural immersion and because of the opportunity to see a totally different higher education system.”
Schafer said he enjoyed working with Middle Eastern students when he was a counselor at Louisiana State University in the ‘70s. It pained him to see Americans negatively stereotype Middle Eastern people when 9/11 occurred.
After working at LSU for 20 years, Schafer moved to Texas State. He was a high school teacher and counselor in Baton Rouge, Louisiana before working at LSU.
Schafer began his career at Texas State in 1997. Gregory Snodgrass, his supervisor and assistant vice president for student affairs, said Schafer has always been “on the cutting edge.”
“He was a steal. We didn’t know what we were getting when we got him,” Snodgrass said.
Schafer said the thing he will miss most about the university is the people.
“When I first interviewed (at Texas State), I just fell in love with the place,” Schafer said. “It was a good fit for me.”
Schafer said the combination of the people he met on campus and the programs Texas State has in place led to a caring atmosphere and environment for him.
He will miss the “pretty campus” and the City of San Marcos—two things he said contribute to Texas State having the “whole package.”
“When I think of the ideal professional, Curt is definitely one of the main ones,” said Tyler Gaudin, mass communication sophomore and student worker at Career Services.
Snodgrass said Schafer is a conceptual thinker who is dedicated not only to Career Services but to higher education and its processes. Schafer is constantly finding ways to make his organization more effective and truly cares about the staff.
Schafer is actively looking ahead to what will be up-and-coming in fields so students are better prepared for the changing work world, Snodgrass said.
Snodgrass said Schafer knows the field of career services better than anyone and is highly respected nationwide.
“We are going to miss him greatly,” Snodgrass said. “We have one of the top career services people in the nation here.”