FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 2011
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
MUW announces interim provost/vice president for academic affairs, vice president for student services
COLUMBUS, Miss. – Mississippi University for Women announced two key leadership positions following recent approval by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning.
Dr. E.E. “Butch” Caston, formerly the dean of the College of Education at Delta State University, will join MUW as interim provost and vice president for academic affairs effective July 1. Dr. Jennifer Miles, who currently serves as assistant professor and master’s degree program coordinator in the higher education program at the University of Arkansas, will start May 9 as MUW’s new vice president for student services.
Caston will succeed current interim Dr. Hal Jenkins, who announced his plans to retire at the end of this academic year.
MUW Interim President Allegra Brigham said, “We are fortunate Dr. Caston has agreed to join our leadership team. We appreciate Dr. Jenkins’ dedicated service as provost for the past two years. He has been an asset to MUW.”
In commenting on Dr. Caston, Brigham said, “His 30-plus years in higher education in Mississippi will be advantageous for MUW during a period of transition. His experiences at another public university will bring new perspectives to our campus. In addition, his spirit of cooperation and collaboration will be assets as he works with faculty in our ongoing pursuit of academic excellence and innovation at this important juncture in higher education.
"Dr. Caston is a highly respected educator and has demonstrated the kind of energetic leadership that will support MUW's mission and help our university continue to progress. He and his wife, Marlene, will be welcomed additions to our campus and to Columbus," added Brigham.
In addition to DSU, Dr. Caston has worked at William Carey and the University of Southern Mississippi. Since retiring from DSU in 2004, he has been engaged in consulting work as well as serving as adjunct faculty. He will begin working with MUW prior to July 1.
He said, “I look forward to the experiences and new associations at MUW beginning this summer. It is an honor to follow Dr. Hal Jenkins, a long-time colleague and friend, and I pledge my total support and commitment to the students, employees and supporters of this great university.”
From 1989 to 2004, he served as dean of the College of Education at DSU. Prior to that, he was director of field experiences and coordinator of teacher education for more than five years.
He also has worked with the Hattiesburg Municipal Separate School District as assistant superintendent as well as Thames Junior High School and Cleveland High School. While at the Hattiesburg Separate School District, he successfully implemented a court ordered desegregation plan.
Dr. Caston earned his doctor of education in guidance and counseling interdisciplinary, administration from the University of Southern Mississippi and both his master’s of education and bachelor’s from Delta State College.
He is very active in his community and has many professional honors and affiliations including Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities, the Freddie Black Memorial Award, Outstanding Young Men of America and Outstanding Young Educator.
Dr. Sue Jolly-Smith, MUW interim dean of the College of Education and Human Sciences, said she was pleased that Dr. Caston accepted the appointment. She worked with him at DSU while he was the director of field experiences and she was an instructor. Shortly thereafter he became dean.
“I have had the privilege of working under his leadership and guidance and consider him a mentor. Dr. Caston is strong, effective and caring. I found him to be supportive whenever I brought new or creative ideas to him. He is a true visionary, and we are indeed fortunate to have his leadership along with that of President Brigham during this important time of transition for MUW. What a privilege to have the opportunity to serve under his leadership again."
Dr. Miles’ professional background includes extensive experience as a practitioner and faculty member.
Brigham said, "We are excited Dr. Miles accepted this key position at MUW. She knows Student Services inside-out having worked in various roles as a practitioner as well as serving as faculty and adviser to master's and doctoral students in student affairs programs. She is a great match with our current Student Services' staff.
“Dr. Miles comes to our campus knowing the challenges facing MUW, all Mississippi universities and higher education in general. She is eager to serve on a team that is clearly focused on moving our university to the next level in all areas. We feel fortunate to have attracted Dr. Miles to our campus and know she will bring great energy and passion to her leadership role at MUW," added Brigham.
At the University of Arkansas, Miles recruits and advises students and coordinates graduate assistantships. She teaches courses related to college student development theory and higher education management.
"I am thrilled to be joining the MUW family in this role. I am so impressed by the dedication of the Student Services staff and truly believe that together we can represent and move MUW into the future," said Miles.
Prior to joining the University of Arkansas, Miles served as director of student development and retention at Nova Southeastern University from 2003-2006. As director, she was a member of the leadership team of the College of Arts and Sciences. Her responsibilities included planning student and family orientation programs, coordinating a leadership-based scholarship program and serving on faculty and staff committees.
She has worked directly with areas including admissions, financial aid, housing and student life at Suffolk University and Bunker Hill Community College, both in Boston; Curry College in Milton, Mass.; and Albion College in Albion, Mich.
Miles earned her doctor of education and master of arts in higher education administration from the University of Alabama and bachelor of science from Florida State University.
She has been involved with various professional organizations including the Association for the Study of Higher Education, Southern Association for College Student Affairs, Association of College Unions International and the American Association of University Women.