Interim provost brings perspective

Risa Dickson, who took the helm as interim provost for the University last month, has already rolled up her sleeves and started to get things done.

“I’m so thrilled to be here,” Dickson said. “There’s so much opportunity in this community and a lot of great people working at (La Verne).” 

Dickson was given specific goals upon starting. At the top of her list is working toward the University’s goals and recommendations per the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, or WASC, the University accrediting agency. The WASC accreditation process aids colleges and universities in developing and sustaining educational programs. 

She said she will be working to tighten up assessment review, and to ensure a budget structure, which will further establish academic strength. 

“It’s one of the main reasons I was hired,” she said. “I can make profound changes in a short timeframe as interim provost.” 

“Already Provost Dickson has shown that her tremendous wealth of experience and the perspective she has gained being an educational leader in a variety of roles will help towards steering the University into a brighter future,” said University President Pardis Mahdavi. “I’m excited to be working with such a collaborative and insightful educational leader.” 

Prior to coming to the University, Dickson served as the interim provost and for the University of Toledo. Her 20-year career in higher education also includes serving as vice president for academic planning and policy at the University of Hawaii, associate dean and communication studies department chair at Cal State San Bernardino, and interim vice president for academic affairs at Palo Alto University. 

The University is conducting a national search to fill the permanent provost position.

Mahdavi said she hopes to have a permanent provost in place by July. 

—Taylor Moore

Taylor Moore is a senior broadcast journalism major and Campus Times editor-in-chief for Spring 2024. In her sixth semester on Campus Times, she has served as the LV Life editor and social media editor twice, as well as a staff writer. She’s also worked on the University’s television news broadcast Foothill Community News as an anchor and reporter, and was a on-air personality for the University’s radio station 107.9 LeoFM.

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