Professor Carrie Preston to Step Down as Director of Kilachand Honors College

From Dr. Jean Morrison, University Provost and Chief Academic Officer
and Dr. Amie Grills, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs

Professor Carrie Preston, who has served as director of the Kilachand Honors College since 2017 and as the college’s Arvind and Chandan Nandlal Kilachand Professor, has announced plans to step down from her administrative role, effective June 30, 2023. Professor Preston holds a faculty appointment in the Department of English and in the Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies Program in the College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) where she will return and continue her teaching and scholarship. In addition, she will continue her work as associate director of the newly created BU Center on Forced Displacement.

As director over the last five-plus years, Professor Preston has brought exceptional energy and focus to further developing the Kilachand Honors College’s unique, interdisciplinary curriculum, expanding its reach and diversity, and deepening its intellectual and social impact as BU’s signature liberal arts living-learning community. Coursework in Kilachand Honors College spans the four years of a student’s undergraduate education and is interrelated with their studies in one of BU’s 11 undergraduate schools and colleges. Drawing on the talents of faculty from across the University, Professor Preston has helped lead a reimagining and revitalization of the college’s academic programming, from highly relevant team-taught courses grounded in creative and critical thinking to innovative, student-produced Keystone Projects that seek to solve problems related to pressing global, social, corporate, and geopolitical challenges.

This focus on relevance and rigor has extended to a host of co-curricular and experiential learning programs Professor Preston has helped develop during her time as director, including the Kilachand Internship Program in Social Justice, a shared summer reading program for entering first-year students, and the recently launched Kilachand magazine, Kaleidoscope, produced in collaboration with the college’s directors and student, alumni, and postdoc editors. Under Professor Preston’s leadership, enrollment in the college has grown by over 40 percent since 2017 to more than 500 students, while retention and graduation rates have likewise continually climbed. Students and faculty have routinely praised Professor Preston’s enthusiasm and approachability and her commitment to cultivating a vibrant and engaged community within Kilachand.

Professor Preston is an internationally respected scholar of modernist literature, performance, and dance, with additional research interests in forced displacement and critical studies of race and gender. She has authored two acclaimed books, 2016’s Learning to Kneel: Noh, Modernism, and Journeys in Teaching and 2011’s Modernism’s Mythic Pose: Gender, Genre, Solo Performance, with another title, Complicit Participation: The Liberal Audience for Anti-racist Theater, forthcoming. Professor Preston has won several BU awards for her teaching and scholarship, including the Peter Paul Career Development Professorship and the United Methodist Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award. From 2014-2016, she served as director of CAS’s Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies Program.

An internal search is planned to identify the next director of the Kilachand Honors College. A formal position description will soon be posted and circulated, with the hope of identifying an incumbent before the end of the 2022-2023 academic year.

On behalf of the University community, please join us in thanking Professor Preston for her excellent leadership of the Kilachand Honors College, and in wishing her continued success as she returns to her responsibilities as a member of the faculty.

Professor Carrie Preston to Step Down as Director of Kilachand Honors College – 12.13.22