The provost of the University of Arkansas is leaving to take the position at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, as the vice chancellor for student affairs is named interim provost at the Fayetteville university.
Jim Coleman, provost and executive vice chancellor, will leave his position June 30 at the UA to become provost and executive vice chancellor at UNC Greensboro. He also will be a professor of biology there. Charles Robinson, vice chancellor for student affairs at the UA, has been appointed interim provost and vice chancellor for academic and student affairs. An internal search for provost will start in late 2020 or early 2021.
Coleman will start Aug. 1 at UNC Greensboro after spending July working with Dana Dunn, who is stepping down July 31 as provost to return to the faculty.
“I’d like to congratulate Jim on his new opportunity, while recognizing his significant impact on our campus,” UA Chancellor Joe Steinmetz said. “Jim’s leadership in all aspects of academic affairs has ushered in new directions in research and innovation, diversity and inclusion, student success and resource development. His leadership roles on our campus have helped advance many exciting developments from the Student Success Center to a new research institute. He has also brought some very outstanding people to campus as well with key hires and promotions.”
Coleman has served as provost and executive vice chancellor at the UA since January 2017 and played a leadership role in the conceptualization of the $45 million Student Success Center and in the development of a proposal that led to a $23.7 million gift to build research and commercialization infrastructure. During his tenure, research expenditures rose by more than $35 million to a record high of $180 million in 2019.
Meanwhile, the UA has improved retention and graduation rates, with both reaching record levels. The university also closed achievement gaps and improved post-graduation success, implemented strategies to include using data analytics to identify students with the highest likelihood of not completed a degree and establishing a program to support these students.
Robinson was appointed vice chancellor for student affairs in 2016. He served as vice provost for diversity affairs within the UA division of academic affairs before he was named vice chancellor for diversity affairs in 2013. He joined the UA faculty in 1999, became professor of history and has served as director of the African American Studies program.
“I appreciate Charles for stepping up to support the academic affairs unit in conjunction with student affairs,” Steinmetz said. “This merger provides singular oversight for the academic and student enterprise, which obviously go hand-in-hand. In combination with a solid academic experience, a student’s out-of-class experience and health and wellness are part of a holistic approach to student success. Charles’ leadership in this area will help to amplify this connectivity and importance.”
UA divisions that report to the provost include all the colleges and schools, Global Campus, administrative and academic units including Academic Initiatives and Integrity, ROTC units of the Army and Air Force, Enrollment Services, Faculty Development and Enhancement, Office of Institutional Research and Assessment, Student Success, University Libraries and the Wally Cordes Teaching and Faculty Support Center. The Office of Research and Innovation and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion will move from the oversight of the provost and report directly to the chancellor.
UA enrollment fell narrowly to 27,559 students in the fall semester, from 27,778 students in the same semester in 2018.