Office of the Dean

Spencer G. Niles has served as dean of the William & Mary School of Education since 2013. During his tenure, the school has solidified and expanded its mission to transform the lives of students, schools and communities both near and far. 

Dean Spencer G. NilesDean Niles developed and implemented the school's current strategic plan, engaging numerous stakeholders and articulating a clear vision for the school's future. He led the development of the school's first online programs, as well as the expansion of the executive Ed.D., which allows working professionals to earn a doctorate in educational leadership in as little as three years. He instituted both the Holmes Scholars initiative and a university-wide Social Justice Scholars program, expanding the school's commitment to preparing culturally responsive, ethical, reflective and collaborative leaders.

Prior to coming to William & Mary, he was distinguished professor and department head for Educational Psychology, Counseling, and Special Education at the Pennsylvania State University. He also served as director of the Center for the Study of Career Development and Public Policy at Penn State. Before joining the faculty at Penn State, he was a professor at the University of Virginia for 13 years, including serving as assistant dean for the Curry School of Education.

Dean Niles is the president of the National Career Development Association (NCDA) and received the organization's Eminent Career Award. He has been named an American Counseling Association (ACA) Fellow, and received the ACA's Thomas Hohenshil National Publication Award, Thomas Sweeney Visionary Leadership and Advocacy Award, and President's Award. Other notable awards include the David Brooks Distinguished Mentor Award, Extended Research Award, and the University of British Columbia Noted Scholar Award. He served as Editor for The Career Development Quarterly and the Journal of Counseling & Development and currently serves on numerous journal editorial boards. He has published over 140 articles and over 150 presentations at national and international conferences. Among his authored or co-authored books is the best-selling textbook in career counseling and development internationally, Career Development Interventions, published by Pearson, as well as a book on counseling at the global level, Counseling around the world: An international handbook

Dean Niles is an Honorary Member of the Japanese Career Development Association, Honorary Member of the Italian Association for Educational and Vocational Guidance, and a Lifetime Honorary Member of the Ohio Career Development Association. He has conducted career advisor/career counseling training in Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Portugal, Qatar, South Africa, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates.

Dean Niles received his undergraduate degree is in Elementary Education from Bloomsburg University and his teaching career began in the Rochester, New York public schools. In addition to his work in education, Dean Niles has worked in a variety of community social service agencies and other university settings. His master's degree is from Lehigh University, and his doctoral degree is from Penn State University.

Download Dean Niles's full CV.