Texas Lutheran University is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Sarah Ferguson to the position of Vice President of Academic Affairs. As the university’s Chief Academic Officer, this position provides vision, leadership, and strategy to ensure the strength of academic affairs across campus. Dr. Ferguson will officially begin her new role on July 8, 2020.
Dr. Ferguson previously served as vice provost for Faculties and Academic Affairs at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota where she was also an associate vice president and academic dean for the Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs.
She was also an associate professor of social work at St. Catherine University and also served in various academic administrative roles there and at the University of St. Thomas. She holds a Ph.D. in social work and two master’s degrees, one in social work and one in public affairs from the University of Minnesota.
At TLU, Dr. Ferguson’s specific responsibilities will include: managing all curricular offerings as well as hiring, development, and evaluation of all faculty members; managing and maintaining all budgets associated with academic affairs; representing academic affairs in all planning and implementation of strategic plans related to academic facilities; overseeing all academic departments and programs, working closely with academic chairs and directors in that process; managing additional departments and programs including the Registrar’s Office, library, academic assessment, academic grants, and International Education; making sure shared governance is honored and utilized, overseeing the structure of academic affairs, and interacting with all faculty committees.
The VPAA serves on the President’s Cabinet and as a member of the university’s senior leadership team through both internal and external efforts. Dr. Ferguson’s professional insight and experiences developing both traditional and non-traditional programs will be a valuable asset to TLU’s senior leadership team as it evaluates opportunities for new academic programs that drive enrollment growth.
“It is a tremendous honor to welcome Dr. Ferguson into our community,” TLU President Dr. Debbie Cottrell said. “Dr. Ferguson’s multi-faceted experience as an academic administrator, along with her deep understanding of the significant place of small, private institutions within the higher education landscape, positions her well to lead our academic programs and to work effectively with our talented and committed faculty. Her commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and her connections to Lutheran higher education further position her to be a strong VPAA for TLU.”