Cathryn R. Newton appointed dean of Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences
Cathryn R. Newton appointed dean of Syracuse University’s College of Arts and SciencesMarch 26, 2001Kelly Homan Rodoskikahoman@syr.edu
Cathryn R. Newton, interim dean and professor of earth sciences in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences (A&S), has been named the college’s dean. The appointment, effective April 15, was announced March 26 by Vice Chancellor and Provost Deborah A. Freund, and is subject to approval by the University’s Board of Trustees. Newton was appointed interim dean of A&S, SU’s largest academic unit, in July 2000, succeeding Dean Robert G. Jensen. “Cathy is a very impressive scholar and educator with many wonderful accomplishments to her credit and a great love of our university,” Freund says. “Everyone was impressed with the breadth of her knowledge across the disciplines. She had enormous support from the search committee, the faculty, references and every other constituency she worked with this year.” Freund speaks highly of Newton’s credentials. “We had a very strong and experienced pool of candidates from which to choose,” she says. “Our campus should feel very proud that we grew one of our own to be such an outstanding candidate. I look forward to working with her in what I am sure will be many great years as our dean.” In her new position, Newton looks forward to guiding the college through the implementation of the University’s forthcoming academic plan. “I’m delighted and humbled to have been selected to lead the college just as a new academic plan is emerging under the leadership of Vice Chancellor and Provost Freund,” says Newton. “The challenges of academic planning are great, but so are the strengths we can together bring to the academic plan. “Whatever I can accomplish will be done primarily by those within the college, whose efforts I will encourage and support,” Newton says. “We are in this together, at a time of very bright prospects. I shall give it my all, and will count on my superb colleagues to do so, as well.” Newton joined SU as an assistant professor of geology in 1983. She was promoted to associate professor in 1989 and was named the Jessie Heroy Page Professor of Earth Sciences and chair of the earth sciences department in 1993. In 1991, Newton received the University Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award, which recognizes individuals who demonstrate exceptional teaching and a record of significant contributions to the scholarly life of the University.
Newton is known for her research in paleobiology and paleoecology, including her work on ancient biogeography. She has published widely in leading scientific publications and serves as editor in chief of the distinguished international journal Paleogeography, Paleoclimatology and Paleoecology. She has won numerous grants from the National Science Foundation and other funding organizations. Newton is in high demand among graduate students as a faculty advisor and was selected by The College of Arts and Sciences as Outstanding Faculty Advisor for 1999. She has served on The College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Council and Honors Council, on the planning committee for the Freshman Forum, and as co-director of the University’s Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) program. In 1992, she served as interim dean for programs, curriculum and instruction in A&S. Newton received a bachelor’s degree in geology from Duke University, a master’s degree in geology from the University of North Carolina and a Ph.D. in earth sciences from the University of California, Santa Cruz.