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Washington State University Office of the Provost

Announcement: Provost’s Office Restructure

Under the leadership of Dr. Mitzi Montoya, provost and executive vice president, the Office of the Provost is restructuring the vice provost positions to strategically align with the office’s system-wide focus on faculty development, student success and inclusive excellence. Brief descriptions for each vice provost are provided below.

Vice Provost for System Innovation and Policy

The Drive to 25 aspirational goal of being a premier research-intensive, land grant institution compels system-level thinking, analysis and (re)design. With the modernization initiative well underway and the incredible progress toward fiscal health recovery, now is the time to reimagine how the components of WSU fit together into an integrated system in which faculty, regardless of physical location, contribute collaboratively toward the offering of excellent academic programs, production of scholarly work and service to our communities. We need to consider how WSU can best serve learners across the state and how we can take advantage of opportunities that are unique to any particular location. We need to reexamine our core academic processes and supporting budget model to ensure that we are designed and aligned for student and faculty success, positive community impact and inclusive excellence.

To support this work, Dr. Craig Parks will serve as vice provost for system innovation and policy. Parks will advance the development of integrated academic affairs processes and policies, support the implementation of new strategic academic opportunities at all locations, and facilitate system (re)design initiatives. He will continue to be the office’s point of contact for university, state, and federal policy issues. Additionally, he will continue to serve as the Office of the Provost’s liaison to the Office of Research and support the University strategic planning process. Parks will assume leadership of WSU’s accreditation-related processes and serve as the Office of the Provost’s liaison to INTO.

Vice Provost for Academic Engagement and Student Achievement

We invite WSU students to make change, innovate and lead for the public good through learning experiences inside and outside of the classroom. It is our responsibility to support their success by providing pathways to exceptional academic resources and experiences for all undergraduate students. This aligns with our Drive to 25 aspirations and supports the transformative Cougar experience we all aim to deliver.

Dr. Mary Wack will oversee the new Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement, comprising the former Office of Undergraduate Education, Office of Academic Engagement, and the University Common Requirements (UCORE) program. Wack oversees undergraduate academic affairs and academic policy, undergraduate student achievement, and transfer policy and articulation, both at WSU and statewide, for which she co-chairs the state’s Joint Transfer Council. She also addresses university classroom and other infrastructure issues as they affect student learning and achievement. To advance these areas she works closely with college and campus leadership, as well as the statewide advising community. This division will build upon programs that prepare students for success, design initiatives that address barriers to academic engagement, collaborate system-wide to advance student achievement and support the development of curricula that delivers powerful student learning experiences. The division includes the following programs: Invest in Cougs, ATLAS, Cougs Rise and Crimson Community Grants programs, First-Year Programs, the Writing Program, Academic Success and Career Center, the LSAMP (Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation) and Research Scholars programs, Assessment of Teaching and Learning, Distinguished Scholarships, Undergraduate Research, and various student-facing academic tools and services.

Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Affairs

The vice provost for faculty development and affairs plays a critical leadership role in ensuring that the University recruits, develops, and retains the world-class faculty that is needed to reach its strategic goals. This leader advises the provost on all matters related to faculty in all colleges at all locations. The vice provost serves as the system-wide advocate for the faculty and provides leadership for the assessment and development of the faculty. The vice provost works collaboratively with the deans, department chairs and the vice chancellors for academic affairs on all matters related to the faculty at all WSU locations. The vice provost also works collaboratively with those engaged in faculty governance, particularly the Faculty Senate. This position is currently vacant; however, a new vice provost for faculty development and affairs will be announced in the near future.

The Office of the Provost is well positioned to lead WSU’s academic enterprise in the Drive to 25. It’s an inspiring and ambitious vision for WSU that will take creativity, focused investment and hard work. The new structure will help strengthen system-wide partnerships with faculty and staff, who empower our students in their pursuits of excellence and opportunity.

Washington State University