COLUMBUS, Miss. – Dr. Scott Tollison, the university’s senior academic dean, is being named interim provost and vice president for academic affairs at Mississippi University for Women.

Tollison, a native of West Point, will assume the position July 1, pending approval by the state Board of Trustees, Institutions of Higher Learning. He will fill the role held by Dr. Thomas Richardson, a longtime respected administrator and faculty member, who will return to scholarship and research.

MUW President Jim Borsig said, “Dean Tollison is a superb administrator and faculty member. He has an effective collegial style. He is well-respected throughout the university community. I am grateful for his willingness to serve.”
Dr. Tollison said, “I hope that I can make a tiny fraction of the impact Dr. Richardson has made on The W. I am incredibly thankful for both his leadership of academic affairs and his personal mentorship.”
“I also want to thank Dr. Borsig for his leadership. I could not ask to have been better supported as I grew into my role as dean. No doubt, both he and Dr. Richardson have been transformational figures in the history of our institution,” he added.

Tollison has served as the dean of the College of Business and Professional Studies since 2012. Prior to being named dean, he was business chair for three years.

Working with faculty and staff, the college’s enrollment has grown 33 percent. Degree programs, including the master of business administration degree, were retitled to clarify degree offerings and attract more students. Partnerships with six community colleges have expanded learning opportunities for students in culinary arts. Additionally, the college fielded its first American Mock Trial Association team and the legal studies program was re-approved in 2017 by the American Bar Association.

“I look forward to working with Acting President Nora Miller, faculty and staff. A lot of good work has been done over the past few years,” Tollison said. “Over the coming months, I hope to focus attention on answering the question, `How can we continue to increase net degree attainment through high-quality learning experiences?’”

Currently, he serves as a faculty athletics representative, the campus Complete 2 Compete (C2C) adult learner champion and co-chair of the Strategic Enrollment Planning Council. His institutional service has included the University Priorities Committee and Leadership Redesign Committee, among others.

His professional affiliations include being an honorary member with Phi Kappa Phi, the National Society of Leadership and Success and Delta Mu Delta. He also completed the Mississippi Community College Leadership Academy in 2014.

In the community, he serves on the Board of Directors for the Columbus Arts Council. Tollison also is involved with the Columbus Exchange Club and is an Honorary Commander of the 14th Medical Support Squadron at Columbus Air Force Base. In 2017, he was named to the Mississippi Business Journal’s Top 50 under 40. He previously served on the Board of Advisors with the West Point/Clay County Growth Alliance.

He holds degrees from Mississippi State University: a doctorate in instructional systems and workforce development and master’s and bachelor’s degrees in information systems.

Before joining The W’s faculty, he taught computer networking technology at East Mississippi Community College.

April 16, 2018
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
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