Appointment of Natalie McKnight as Dean of the College of General Studies

July 18th, 2014

From Dr. Jean Morrison, University Provost and Chief Academic Officer

Last June, as you know, we appointed Professor Natalie McKnight as Interim Dean of the College of General Studies (CGS) for the 2013-2014 academic year. The interim appointment followed a rigorous, but ultimately inconclusive national search, and we believed the decision to be the right course of action for CGS and for Boston University at the time. A year later, after careful evaluation of her performance in this leadership role and extensive consultation with both colleagues and subordinates, President Brown and I are pleased to announce the appointment of Natalie McKnight as Dean of the College of General Studies.

Dean McKnight has been a member of CGS faculty since 1990, and served as Chair of the Humanities Division from 1997-2011 and Associate Dean for Faculty Research and Development from 2011-2013 prior to her appointment last year. As Director of CGS’s Center for Interdisciplinary Teaching and Learning (CITL), she was a key contributor to strengthening the CGS program and led the ePortfolio assessment project funded by the Davis Educational Foundation to quantitatively evaluate the success of the CGS curriculum. As Interim Dean, she performed exceptionally well, continuing to enhance the CGS program and further garnering the respect of CGS faculty and staff.

This announcement follows a series of meetings I hosted throughout the month of June, in which CGS faculty were invited to provide input assessing Dean McKnight’s service since her interim appointment last summer. The meetings were well attended, and all of the feedback received, both in-person and written, was very positive. I want to personally thank those faculty members who participated for contributing so substantively to this important process. By the end, there was a clear consensus that Dean McKnight had been the right choice for this position and that we should move forward with her permanent appointment.

It is in light of this positive assessment, our own comprehensive review of Dean McKnight’s performance over the last year, and our belief in her ability to advance CGS’s mission and reputation as a national leader in general education that we are delighted to announce this decision. Please join us in congratulating Dean McKnight on her appointment and in wishing her well as she continues in this leadership role. I look forward to working closely with her and also with you to continue making progress toward increasing excellence in the College of General Studies.

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