June 14, 2009

Brown Selected as Next Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education

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The University announced last week that Prof. Laura Brown, English, will become the next Provost for Undergraduate Education in July. The announcement came almost four months after Brown’s predecessor, Michelle Moody-Adams, accepted the position as Dean of Columbia College.

Brown is currently the John Wendell Anderson Professor of English. Throughout her 28 years at Cornell, she has served as a director of the graduate program and chaired the English department from 2002 to 2005. She was also involved in the Provost’s Committee on the Status of Women about 20 years ago and recently served on the Faculty Senate.

After becoming one of the eight vice provosts, Brown told the University that her agenda includes overseeing the 2009 New Student Reading Project, supporting the West Campus House System, developing concrete ways to encourage better teaching, advocating for students’ learning experiences and maintaining the strength of academic programs for underrepresented populations.

Provost Kent Fuchs, who announced the appointment last Thursday, spoke highly of Brown.

“Laura has a broad range of experience to offer,” Fuchs told the University.”She’s taught in the First-Year Writing Seminar Program for many years and has a commitment to teaching excellence. She also offers a long history of experience with a number of leadership positions, including participation in the Faculty Senate. She has demonstrated excellence in all of her work, and she brings a lot to the table.”

Brown has published five books, all related to 18th Century English literature. She is now working on her sixth book, according to her C.V. She has also twice received the faculty fellowship from Cornell’s Society for the Humanities.

She earned her first degree in English at Stanford University in 1971 and later obtained a Ph.D in English at the University of California, Berkeley in 1977. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.