Henderson names new provost
Henderson State University has named Dr. Risa Dickson as its new provost and vice president for academic affairs, Henderson President Glen Jones announced Jan. 15 following a nationwide search. Dickson, who is currently serving as associate provost for academic personnel at California State University, San Bernardino, will join Henderson on July 1, 2013. Dickson holds a Ph.D. in interpersonal/organizational communication and has more than 20 years of experience as an administrator and faculty member.
“Dr. Dickson brings a wealth of diverse experiences in higher education as a professor, department chair, associate dean, executive associate to the president and associate provost,” said Jones. “Dr. Dickson’s approach to academic program development, enrollment management, student retention and strategic planning will serve Henderson extremely well. She is a very accomplished administrator and we are excited to have such an innovative academic leader join the HSU family.”
In her position at California State University, San Bernardino, Dickson’s duties include: personnel management of 415 tenured and tenure track faculty and 460 adjunct faculty members; supervising strategic processes within Academic Affairs, including enrollment management; and managing retention, promotion and tenure processes. Dickson also served as an advisor to the provost on enrollment and the academic affairs budget. Additionally, she led the CSUSB campus on the most recent California State University System strategic plan, Access to Excellence.
“I am thrilled to join the faculty and staff of Henderson State University,” said Dickson. “Being Arkansas’s only public liberal arts university, Henderson provides a distinctive educational experience. I am excited that I have the opportunity to help shape the future of a remarkable institution.”
Dickson served as California State University, San Bernardino’s executive associate to the president for planning and special programs from 2006-2010. Dickson directed the implementation of goals from the strategic plan; managed institutional research; worked with K-16 educational bridge programs and worked with the CSU system office and state legislators on legislative issues at the state and federal level. Dickson also managed special programs including the Presidential Academic Excellence Scholars Program and CSUSB Military initiatives.
As the associate dean of the College of Arts and Letters at CSUSB from 2004-2006, Dickson managed faculty workloads, course scheduling, student grievances and commencement ceremonies. She also directed the American Studies, Liberal Studies and Humanities programs.
During her tenure as department chair of the Department of Communication Studies, Dickson implemented a new communication M.A. degree, launched two successful distance learning programs, designed and implemented a department-wide mandatory student advising program and negotiated formal working agreements with two area Junior College programs.
She has published numerous articles, papers and book chapters on a wide range of topics in higher education, communications and advertising. In 2008-2009, Dickson participated in the American Council on Education Fellows series, one of the nation’s most influential higher education programs.
The provost is the second-highest ranking officer at Henderson and is the chief academic officer. The provost is responsible for the overall supervision of all academic programs, academic promotion and tenure decisions, academic strategic planning and development of university policies and strategic goals.
Henderson received a number of outstanding applications from around the country for the provost position. A committee of faculty and staff members, chaired by Jones, led the search and interview process. “I want to thank the search committee for their outstanding efforts. Additionally, I extend my appreciation to the faculty, staff and students who provided comments and feedback to the committee,” Jones said. Dickson will succeed Dr. Maralyn Sommer who has served as interim provost and vice president for academic affairs since July.
“In addition to her diverse academic background, Dr. Dickson’s character and collaborative leadership style will complement the university’s time-honored commitment to making a difference in the lives of our students and in the communities we serve,” said Jones.
For more information about Henderson State University, please visit www.hsu.edu.