Donna Fenton

Academic Coach & Retention Specialist
BS - Biology, West Virginia Wesleyan College (1984); MA - Communication Studies, West Virginia University (2006)
Year Appointed
Courses - Fall
  • PIO 102: Student Engagement


Donna Fenton is an experienced, versatile, and responsive communicator who brings 25 years of experience from the private sector, most recently in cardiac rhythm management as a Clinical Education Specialist.

Donna serves the Academic Resource Center (ARC) as an Academic Coach and Retention Specialist. She provides individualized support to students as they navigate academic challenges commonly found in the gap between secondary education and collegiate learning. Donna delivers personalized improvement plans and content strategies that lead to increased learner autonomy and student engagement. On a case by case basis, she serves as a liaison between students and additional campus resources, both within the ARC (learning strategy workshops, content and writing tutors, quiet study spaces, and special learning accommodations) and across campus (Health & Wellness, Communication Resource Center, and faculty office hours). 

Committed to lifelong learning, Donna has completed all required coursework toward a Ph.D. in education from Old Dominion University, focused on post-secondary learning and STEM education. Her research interests include person-centered communication practices and educational activities that contribute to student motivation, empowerment, persistence, and retention. 

Donna and her husband, Glen Goertler, live in Williamstown, West Virginia. They enjoy traveling, gardening, cooking, and spending time with family and friends. They have raised five adult children and are proud grandparents to a growing brood of little ones.