UWT names new vice chancellor

Beth Rushing has been named vice chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Washington Tacoma. Her appointment is effective July 2, subject to the approval of the UW Board of Regents.

Dr. Rushing has served for the past six years as dean of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Georgia College and State University, which has recently undergone a significant transition to become Georgia’s only public liberal arts institution. She previously held positions as assistant dean of Arts and Sciences at GCSU and as chair of the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, Criminal Justice and Social Work at University of Tennessee at Martin.

“We are fortunate that Dr. Rushing’s background at her previous institutions is highly relevant to the work we are doing at UW Tacoma,” said Chancellor Patricia Spakes. “I am convinced that Dr. Rushing has the necessary vision, leadership skills and collaborative approach that will make her a strong and collaborative vice chancellor for Academic Affairs.”

Rushing has worked extensively with first- and second-year students. Her experience in developing retention and general education programs appealed to UW Tacoma administrators.

In May 2005, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law legislation authorizing UW Tacoma and two other upper-division campuses in Washington to accept freshmen and sophomores. UW Tacoma’s first freshmen began their studies in the fall of 2006. UW Tacoma opened its General Education Center in the spring of 2006 to provide curricular and academic advising for pre-majors, first-year undergraduates and sophomores with an undeclared major.

The university conducted a national search, and Rushing emerged as UW Tacoma’s top choice, according to Spakes. Rushing was among four finalists chosen by the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Search Committee to come to campus for extensive interviews with the campus community.

Rushing replaces Alan Wood, interim vice chancellor for Academic Affairs, who will return to his post as professor of interdisciplinary arts and sciences at UW Bothell. Rushing holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Duke University.