Oct. 31, 2008
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
Jordan accepts position at Georgia College & State University
COLUMBUS, Miss. – Dr. Sandra Jordan, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Mississippi University for Women, has accepted a position at Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville.
Jordan has been appointed Georgia College’s first-ever provost to lead its academic programs. She will join the university on July 1, 2009.
As provost and vice president for academic affairs at Georgia College, Jordan will lead and manage the university’s Division of Academic Affairs, which includes four academic schools. She also will oversee the library, instructional and information technology, off-site centers and programs, continuing education, sponsored research, enrollment management and other academic support functions.
The opportunity was one that could not be overlooked, Jordan explained.
“In many ways this is the last thing in the world I expected to be doing. I was not on the market, in other words, I was not actively sending out my resume to other universities. Rather, I was nominated by GCSU’s dean of arts and sciences, who is a former colleague of mine, and actively recruited to apply. However, the more I learned about the university and the responsibilities of the position, the more interested I became. The position includes some areas of responsibility that are not part of my current job. Additionally, due to the population explosion in and around Atlanta and to Georgia’s Hope Scholarship, the public universities in that state are enjoying the type of budgetary support and student enrollment numbers that make the position very attractive.”
While at MUW, Jordan was seen as “a change agent” and she helped to launch several initiatives, including continuous improvement in academics through a department-centered approach to assessing student learning; enhancing efforts to support student success and retention through mentoring programs, early alert systems, and the new “Turning Point” project; greater access to our institution through accelerated courses and on-line or hybrid options; establishment of a new faculty evaluation system that provides faculty more flexibility; and most recently, creating opportunities for students and faculty to “go global” through establishment of MOU with universities in China.
According to Jordan, “I have had an opportunity to work across the campus on projects that help promote student and faculty success. Throughout that work I’ve been impressed by the dedication of MUW’s faculty and staff to building a supportive living- learning community.”
Faculty praise the work Jordan has done to provide more opportunities for their professional development.
Dr. Joyce Hunt, interim dean and emerita professor of management in the College of Business and Legal Studies, said, Dr. Jordan is a visionary administrator who has provided outstanding academic leadership to MUW. She has strengthened faculty professional development, program assessment and community outreach. Her dynamic personality and democratic management style have led to significant positive changes within our university. What a huge loss for MUW and higher education in Mississippi.
In addition to organizing more faculty workshops on campus, Jordan helped to develop future campus leaders through the creation of the Higher Education Leadership Program, and introduced collaborative “Teaching Circles” to MUW. At the state level, Jordan has been active on the Steering Committee of IHL’s Strategic Initiative and worked to align the state’s priorities with the institution’s strategic planning process.
Jordan also worked closely with Dr. Bucky Wesley, vice president for student services, to create an enrollment management plan for the university.
Wesley said, “We worked closely together to coordinate recruitment efforts in order to highlight the strength of the university.”
He added that she has been innovative in pushing forward the implementation of more on-line programs, executive certificate programs, condensed coursework and a program for lifelong learners.
The decision to leave after only two years as MUW’s provost was not an easy one.
According to Dr. Jordan, “MUW is a welcoming campus, and I came here thinking that I’d be here for many years. It is a pleasure to work with so many talented faculty and under the guidance of a supportive president. Dr. Limbert and I share many of the same values related to education and we work very well together. Additionally, I’ve made many friends among the faculty, staff and administration here. Honestly, all these things made this a very difficult decision.”
As a tenured full professor in the Department of Art and Design, Jordan is building a legacy that will flourish after she leaves. Throughout this year she has been making monthly contributions into an account that will establish a speakers’ series for the department
She said, “I was looking for a way to give something tangible to this fine university. So last summer my husband and I decided that this was an appropriate way to give back to the institution that gives so much to this community.”
MUW President Claudia A. Limbert said, “It has been a pleasure to work with Dr. Jordan. She has brought us many new ideas that have benefited our students and our campus and will continue to do so for a long time to come. We have all truly enjoyed working with her and wish her the very best in the next step of her career.”