Mark Sapara

  • Assistant Vice President and Dean for Intercultural Engagement

Education

  • M.Ed., creative arts education, Rutgers University
  • B.A., English/communications and theater, Fairleigh Dickinson University

Biography

Mark Sapara brings over 25 years of higher education experience to Oberlin College and Conservatory in both student affairs and academic services.

Mark began his career in University Admissions, Financial Aid and Residential Life, serving as the Multicultural Theme Housing Coordinator at Drew University in New Jersey during his years in Residence Life. Later, Mark was an Assistant Dean at both Fairleigh Dickinson University-Madison (FDU) and Rutgers University. When he returned to Drew, he was responsible for international student recruitment, traveling through Russia, the Middle East, Hong Kong and Europe, espousing the virtues of a liberal arts education. As he transitioned back to academic services, Mark became the Director of Learning Support Services at Kean University in Union, NJ, where he was responsible for overseeing the transformation of a traditional University Library into a 21st century Learning Commons that incorporated Tutoring, a Writing Center, and a Public Speaking Lab. Most recently, Mark served as Campus Dean for Strayer University’s academic programs and operations at their Verizon Global Headquarters campus in Basking Ridge, NJ, as well as Vice-Chair for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council at FDU.

In addition to his administrative background, Mark has taught Public Speaking, College Writing and First-Year Seminar at Fairleigh Dickinson University since 1996 and has been an executive speaking coach for upper management in business and hospital administration.

Mark received a bachelor of arts degree in English and theater with a concentration in communications from FDU and a master’s degree in creative arts education from Rutgers University. His master’s project focused on LGBTQ+ training modules for residence life Professionals. In addition, he is coauthor of Model Programs to Enhance Multicultural Learning with Joyce Penfield and has presented at numerous state and regional conferences on issues of academic advising, diversity, student development and academic support services.

In his spare time, Mark is an avid music lover and concert-goer (alternative/​electronic/​industrial/​goth/​shoegaze), enjoys a good cup of coffee and prides himself on having ~7000 comic books that he’s been collecting since childhood. Following a visit to Oberlin College as an undergrad, Mark always dreamed of coming to Oberlin to be with “his community.” Many years later, he is happy to finally fulfill this dream.