Heather Downs joined the Virginia Academic Affairs staff in 2013. In 2019, she assumed the role of director of academics and in 2020 was promoted to Associate Athletics Director of Academics and Student Development . She manages a team of coordinators who provide academic support services for all student-athletes. She monitors eligibility, progress toward degree and the individualization of academic interventions.
Downs serves as the academic coordinator for the women’s soccer team, along with a group of football student-athletes, supporting them directly to reach their academic potential.
Downs came to UVA with a background in student affairs management experience. She worked in the Office of Student Life at California for two years, managing the development and implementation of campus leadership programs. She previously worked in student support services at Northern Colorado as the facilitator of academic advising, specifically with high-risk students.