Published on January 25, 2018  
goss harold

Position: Associate Athletics Director for Academics and Compliance 

Working at Samford since 2006 

Bonus fact: Prior to assuming his current role in athletics, Goss was associate librarian and chair, reference and instruction, in the Samford University library. 

What is your favorite thing about your job at Samford? That’s easy—the people. I have been very fortunate to work for and with people that I respect and enjoy. I consider it a tremendous blessing to be a part of this community. I started my journey at Samford nearly 12 years ago having no idea I would love it here so much. The primary reason I love this place is the men and women I have worked with. 

What is one thing your colleagues may not know about you? Some folks may not know that I have lived in several places. I grew up in the military and am a veteran. I have lived in California, Georgia, South Carolina, North Dakota, South Korea and Germany. I do not recommend North Dakota from December–March. 

What is your favorite activity outside of Samford? My favorite activity outside of Samford is spending time with my beautiful wife Heather and daughters Georgia and Marley. Heather is my best friend so it really doesn’t matter what I am doing when it’s with her. She makes me smile and laugh—a lot. My daughters are my heart. I am not sure if they are keeping me young or causing me to age faster. Either way, I really like spending time with them. 

How did your background prepare you for your current role at Samford? I think all the years I spent around the military put me in constant situations where I had to interact with people from different backgrounds, races and nationalities. As a result, I learned that it isn’t wise to make judgements about people based on external or surface factors. That experience shaped me in a way that has helped me to be very comfortable working with everyone in our community here at Samford. 

What, specifically, does your job involve? It is my job to make sure our 350 student-athletes have all the support they need to be successful academically. Many people don’t realize how challenging being a student athlete is. I certainly had no idea prior to assuming my current role four years ago. As such, I consider it a privilege help them achieve their goals. We have a very supportive administration, great coaches, a fantastic staff and the best student athletes in the country. All that makes what I do a blast, and there is never a dull moment. 

What is the biggest challenge you face in helping student athletes maintain Samford’s academic standards? Really just getting our new students off to a good start. Samford is challenging for all freshmen as our core curriculum is rigorous. Once we get them through that first year or so and into their majors most of our student athletes do great. 

What is the best piece of advice you were ever given and by whom? From my mom: “just do the next right thing.” My mother always believed if you did that, God would take care of the rest. She really always modeled that. It’s something I have carried with me for a long time. I have more respect for her than I could possibly express with words. 

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.