Friday, June 29, 2012

FAMU appoints interim deans to guide division process for College of Arts and Sciences

On July 1, 2012, the College of Arts and Sciences will be formally divided into the College of Science and Technology, and the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities.

Maurice Edington has been asked to serve as interim dean of the College of Science and Technology, and Valencia Matthews (pictured) agreed to serve as the interim dean of the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities. Ralph Turner, the current dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, will return to his former role as 3M Distinguished Professor of Chemistry in the new College of Science and Technology.

Edington most recently served as the university’s accreditation liaison for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the director of the FAMU Quality Enhancement Program, and chair of the University’s Curriculum Committee.  He has extensive experience in administrative leadership and accreditation, having served as the chairman of the FAMU Department of Chemistry from 2002 to 2008 and as director of the FAMU Office of Engineering and Science Support from 2003 to 2005. Edington received his B.A. degree in chemistry from Fisk University and a Ph.D. degree in physical chemistry from Vanderbilt University. He joined the faculty at FAMU in 1998 after completing a year of postdoctoral studies at Duke University.

Matthews is a full professor and assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, where she supervises the arts, languages and humanities programs. She also serves as the director of FAMU’s Essential Theatre.  Throughout her 18 years with the University, she supported many community service efforts, including founding and directing the Irene C. Edmonds Youth Theatre, a program for young people between the ages of seven and 16.  Matthews received her B.S. degree in theatre from South Carolina State University, a master’s degree from Ohio State University and her Ph.D. from Florida State University.     

Turner has been employed at FAMU for the past 37 years, having previously served as chair of the Chemistry Department.  His exemplary efforts in teaching undergraduate and graduate physical chemistry have garnered him national recognition.   In addition to providing quality instruction, excellent administrative services and creative research, Turner has also been involved in numerous activities to increase significantly, the representation of minorities in STEM disciplines, these include director of the MARC Honors Undergraduate Research Training Program, director of the Thirteen College Curriculum Program, and director of the Florida-Georgia Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Project.

The College of Science and Technology will house the following departments: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Information Systems, Mathematics, and Physics.

The College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities will house the following departments: Army ROTC, English (The Foreign Language Department will be combined with Department of English), History/Political Science/Geography/Afro-American Studies, Music, Psychology, Social Work, Sociology/Criminal Justice, and Visual Arts.

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