University of Central Missouri: Experienced Education Leader Prepares for New Role as UCM Dean

Jeff W. Robertson, Ph.D., an educator and administrator whose teaching and leadership experience spans 24 years, has been named Dean of the University of Central Missouri’s College of Health Science and Technology (CHST). UCM Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Phillip Bridgmon announced this new appointment, noting Robertson begins his new duties Jan. 3, 2022.

“Dr. Robertson quickly rose to the top of a very competitive search process. His deep leadership experiences have focused on facilitating student success and serving his colleagues,” Bridgmon said. “We look forward to his collaborative approach as part of our efforts in the College of Health, Science, and Technology.”

Robertson currently serves as Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at Arkansas Tech University, where he has worked since 1997.

“In meeting students who are excited about their academic careers at UCM, staff who are dedicated to the university’s mission, faculty who are passionate about the academic landscape, and administrators with valuable vision for the university’s future, I am excited to become a part of this strong university,” Robertson said.

Robertson joined ATU in 1997 as an Assistant Professor of Astrophysics and as Director of the Astronomical Observatory, which he continues to oversee. In addition to climbing the faculty ranks to become a professor, he has served in positions that include Head of the Department of Physical Sciences, Interim Dean of the College of Business, Interim Dean of the Graduate College, and Dean of the College of Natural and Health Sciences, a role in which he served for 10 years..

Dean of the UCM College of Education Ann McCoy chaired the search committee that met with the top candidates to lead the CHST. She has great confidence in Robertson’s ability to meet the challenges that go with his position.

“Dr. Robertson brings a wealth of leadership experience to his new role as Dean of the College of Health, Science and Technology at UCM. His emphasis on the importance of collaboration both within and outside the college will prove beneficial to the diverse programs housed in the college,” she said.

As a college dean at ATU, Robertson oversaw an academic area that included 100 faculty and staff members, offering 22 undergraduate degree programs and three master’s programs to approximately 1,600 student majors within academic departments that included Biological Sciences, Mathematics, Nursing, and Physical Sciences.

In his role as Dean of the UCM College of Health, Science and Technology, Robertson will provide leadership for an area that is student-centered, while also focused on innovative education in the scientific, technological and management fields. He will serve faculty, staff and students in academic schools related to Computer Science and Mathematics; Geoscience, Physics and Safety; Natural Sciences; Nursing; Nutrition, Kinesiology, and Psychological Science; and Technology.

While preparing for his professional career, Robertson earned a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Bachelor of Science in Astronomy at the University of Kansas in 1989. He continued his education, earning a Master of Science in Astronomy at San Diego State University in 1991, followed by a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Astrophysics at Indiana University, 1995.

His service to his profession is vast and includes a broad spectrum of activities. These range from serving for two consecutive years as a photometry and CCD imaging instructor for a weeklong professional development program at Vanderbilt University Dyer Observatory in Nashville, Tennessee to six years of participation on the Peer Review Corps for the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

Already getting a firm grasp of UCM’s rich culture and traditions, including some of the unique ways campus members play homage to the mule mascot, Robertson is excited about the opportunity to put his background and experience to work in service to the institution.

As he put it, “I look forward to lending my leadership and embarking on an expedition full of opportunities with the students, faculty and staff at UCM as Dean of the College of Health, Science and Technology.

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