Mark Rollins appointed as new UCollege dean
Philosophy professor and performing arts department chair Mark Rollins will take over as University College dean effective July 1, Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Sciences Barbara Schaal announced earlier this week.
Rollins has been at Washington University for nearly 30 years, during which time he has served in a number of administrative positions, including a four-year stint as UCollege associate dean and then a nine-year tenure as chair of the philosophy department.
University College, a division of the College of Arts & Sciences, offers part-time and evening classes to students and St. Louis community members and manages the Summer School.
In his new role as UCollege dean, Rollins hopes to improve the college’s facilities, inspire more interdisciplinary programs and create more online and online-hybrid courses for students.
Rollins feels that UCollege’s resources can be improved in order to provide a better physical space for students.
“I would like to see University College have improved facilities,” Rollins said. “It’s currently in January Hall…and the space is limited.”
He also hopes to create more programming in conjunction with the other graduate and undergraduate schools at Washington University and for more research to be conducted at UCollege.
“[I want] more collaborative efforts, given growth of interdisciplinary programs,” Rollins said. “I want to think about developing new programs, new markets that will be reflective of the nature of research that’s done at Washington University.”
Given the prevalence of online coursework options at other universities, Rollins would like to expand upon the number of online educational opportunities available.
“We currently do some limited online classes or hybrid classes, but that is an enormous area of development in continuing education, so I think we need to think about what role Washington University will play in that regard,” Rollins said.
Rollins hopes to ensure that the University College, which offers courses to a diverse group of students, including undergraduates and older adults enrolled in the Lifelong Learning Institute, is seen as an important part of the University’s programs.
“University College is a very important part of not only Arts & Sciences but also the broader University mission and it has been somewhat underappreciated,” Rollins said. “My view is that University College is a real opportunity for the University to build something that it can be proud of.”