During the 2018-19 school year, NNU Faculty members engaged in conversation regarding the “two-College” horizontally aligned academic structure, and whether it has been serving the University well. This past structure grouped all academic departments into either the college for the traditional undergraduate program or the college for all adult & graduate programs.
During spring 2019, Faculty reviewed and discussed three different possible structures, eventually voting and deciding to move to a “7-College” structure—a vertical structure that is aligned by discipline and without regard to separation of undergraduate and graduate programs. The hope is that this new structure will encourage the development of pathways so our students are able to more efficiently move through their programs, enhancing the overall educational experience at NNU.
NNU’s new structure will be comprised of the following Colleges:
College of Arts & Humanities, College of Behavioral & Social Sciences, College of Business, College of Education, College of Engineering, Mathematics & Science, College of Nursing and College of Theology & Christian Ministries.
Upon the announcement of this new structure, one of the first tasks of this phase-in was to appoint a Dean for each of the Colleges. Three of our Colleges already had individuals serving in Dean positions (or a Dean-equivalent position), which meant that we needed to identify individuals to serve as Dean of each of the remaining four Colleges.
Because of the depth and quality of NNU’s Faculty, we made the decision to make these appointments from within NNU rather than looking externally for this leadership. Vice President Brad Kurtz-Shaw consulted with faculty leadership and then oversaw a process to collect nominations and applications, vet the candidates and then conduct interviews of each of the candidates for these four Dean positions. Following this process, VP Kurtz-Shaw made recommendations to President Joel Pearsall for appointment of the four new Deans.
The University is excited to announce that the following faculty members have been appointed to serve as Dean of the following Colleges:
College of Arts & Humanities – Dr. Judy Marlett
Dr. Marlett is Professor of Music who has been an NNU faculty member since 1996. Judy has served the NNU community in a variety of roles, including CAS Faculty Vice-Chair and most recently as the Chair of the Faculty.
College of Behavioral & Social Sciences – Dr. Lawanna Lancaster
Dr. Lancaster is Professor of Social Work who has been an NNU faculty member since 2002. Lawanna has served in multiple roles during her time at NNU, including CAGS Faculty Vice-Chair, and as Director of NNU’s MSW Program.
College of Education – Dr. LoriAnn Sanchez
Dr. Sanchez is Associate Professor of Education who has been an NNU faculty member since 2012. LoriAnn has served as Chair of NNU’s Undergraduate Department of Education this past year, and has served as Director of NNU’s Adult & Professional Programs in Education.
College of Engineering, Mathematics & Science – Dr. Jamee Nixon
Dr. Nixon is Associate Professor of Biology who has been an NNU faculty member since 2007. Jamee has served on a number of councils and committees during her time at NNU, and has served this past year as Chair of the Assessment and Accreditation Committee.
These four new Deans join Dr. Bill Russell, Dean of the College of Business; Dr. Leonie Sutherland, Dean of the College of Nursing; Dr. Brent Peterson, Dean of the College of Theology & Christian Ministries; and, Dr. Duane Slemmer, Dean of Academic Services.
These eight Deans will assist Vice President Kurtz-Shaw in vetting and interviewing candidates for another crucial academic position – the Dean of Adult & Graduate Studies. That process will begin soon and should result in an appointment by the beginning of classes this fall.