Higher Education and Human Resources

Vermont college names local dean president

May 14, 2015
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University dean becomes president of Vermont college
Elaine Collins. Courtesy GVSU

After more than a decade of leadership, a university dean is leaving West Michigan to serve as president at a college in Vermont.

Grand Valley State University said this month that Elaine Collins, dean of the College of Education, has been appointed president of Johnson State College in Johnson, Vt.

John Shinsky, a professor in the College of Education, will serve as interim dean as of July 1.

Collins’ leadership

Gayle Davis, provost and VP of academic and student affairs at GVSU, said Collins brought a rich background of teaching and leadership experience to the university.

“For the past decade, she has successfully negotiated the very difficult political environment that has characterized teacher preparation and certification,” Davis said. “It is no surprise her talent and experience have attracted another institution to select her as its president. We will miss her at Grand Valley, where she has served so very well, and we wish her all the best in her new position.”

Since joining GVSU in 2003, Collins led the College of Education through two national accreditations and strengthened its programming by developing partnerships with local museums, school districts, community colleges and businesses.

She serves as the chair of the Professional Teacher Education Advisory Council and serves on the Advisory Board for Sustainability.

Previously, Collins was the VP of arts and sciences at West Shore Community College and interim VP of academic affairs at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

College of Education

Upon Collins’ departure, GVSU will launch a national search for a full-time dean of the 50-year-old College of Education.

The College of Education provides undergraduate, graduate and graduate teacher certification programs and has roughly 4,000 students, 175 faculty members and 25 staff members.

GVSU’s School of Education was officially established as a College of Education in 2004, recognized as an Exemplary Teacher Preparation Institution by the Michigan Department of Education in 2006 and passed the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education Accreditation Review in 2012. 

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