June 20, 2006

Liberal Arts dean takes post in New York

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Shirley Clay Scott, dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, will become dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Hunter College of the City University of New York beginning Aug. 14.

"I'm proud to have been a part of the effort here in the past seven years. It's a wonderful college and I have loved being associated with it," said Scott. "It's been the very best professional experience of my life."

Scott joined SIUC in July 1999 after serving as dean of the Graduate College at Western Michigan University.

"We acknowledge Dean Scott for her many accomplishments and contributions to the college and University. The college has benefited from her guidance and leadership," said John M. Dunn, SIUC provost and vice chancellor. "We will miss her and we wish her the very best. We will move quickly to make an interim appointment, which will be followed by a national search in the fall. The college is in good shape and I am confident we can attract an excellent candidate to build on Dean Scott's legacy."

Scott is most proud of her work fostering faculty members.

"I'm really pleased with faculty achievements of both the new ones and the ones who have been here," she said. "One of the really joyful things is watching faculty develop and take their role in the college. There is exciting work being done here and I'll miss seeing that go forward."

Scott said she also is proud of the increase in the diversity of the faculty during her tenure.

She also oversaw the 2004 renovation of Altgeld Hall, home to the School of Music. "I hope plans for other facility improvements move forward," she said.

Scott earned her bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from Kent State in 1962, 1970 and 1973 respectively. Her graduate studies concentrated on Britain's gothic and romantic literature.

She won a post-doctoral fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities to study at the University of Chicago, where she focused on literary criticism.

Scott said she welcomes the challenge of working at a university in a metropolitan area.

"I've never lived for any length of time in a large city. Living in New York will be a completely new experience and I look forward to it," said Scott.

Supporting and fostering faculty excellence are among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.