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González, Wells to Serve as Special Assistants to the Chancellor
Nicholson to Lead New Student Engagement Effort
Chancellor Kent Syverud today announced that University College Dean Bea González, and a former senior vice president and dean of student affairs at the University, Barry L. Wells, will be joining the Chancellor’s leadership team as Special Assistants.
The Chancellor also announced that Whitman School Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs and Professor of Retail Practice Amanda Nicholson will lead an effort to generate new ideas and input from undergraduate and graduate students across campus and create new communications tools for the University to better connect with students.
As Special Assistant to the Chancellor, González will support the Chancellor and his leadership team in areas related to student affairs, student retention and success, strategic planning, and day-to-day services, policies and procedures that are focused on creating and sustaining a quality environment for student learning, success and support. González will continue in her role as dean of University College during this time.
Wells, as Special Assistant to the Chancellor working in tandem with González and the Chancellor’s leadership team, will provide advice, counsel and management on a range of important issues in areas related to student life, diversity, inclusion and overall student engagement.
Both González and Wells will work directly with Senior Vice President and Dean of Student Affairs Rebecca Reed-Kantrowitz as they undertake their work. Both will report directly to the Chancellor and begin in their positions on Feb. 1.
Nicholson is being tapped to lead an effort to generate new ideas from undergraduate and graduate students across campus on how to enhance communication and understanding about university processes and increase knowledge about issues important to the student body. Nicholson was instrumental in launching the Goodman IMPRESS program at the Whitman School, an innovative program that prepares students for life after college. Nicholson’s work is already underway.
“Bea and Barry have decades of experience at our University and will bring vast knowledge and expertise that will benefit students and the full campus community,” says Chancellor Syverud. “I look forward to working closely with them as we strive to provide our students the best possible academic, social and co-curricular experience at Syracuse.”
“For her part, Amanda continues to bring new and innovative ideas to the University that vastly enhance the academic experiences of our students,” Chancellor Syverud says. “I’m eager to receive her ideas on how we might more fully engage our entire student body.”
González has more than 30 years of experience in continuing education as well as a distinguished record of public service. She joined University College in 1984 as an academic advisor and quickly rose through the ranks. After serving as associate dean at UC, she was appointed interim dean in 2004 and as dean in 2007. In addition to being recognized with numerous awards and honors for outstanding leadership in public and community service, González has been elected to public office three times. In fall 2001, González was the first Latina to be elected president of the Common Council for the City of Syracuse. She also worked closely with Chancellor Syverud in the fall serving as his appointed liaison to the students comprising THE General Body.
Wells served as senior vice president and dean of Student Affairs from 1995 to 2008. During this time he engaged students in becoming responsible global citizens and lifelong learners. Wells led the creation of key programs and services including, but not limited to, the establishment of the Office of Learning Communities, the LGBT Resource Center, and the Office of Multicultural Affairs. The WellsLink Leadership Program is named in honor of Wells to recognize the many contributions he made to student success and achievement. Following his tenure as senior vice president and dean of student affairs, Wells served as consultant to the University for several years, with a specific focus on the areas of diversity, minority student recruitment and retention, and student life. In 2004, he received the Chancellor’s Citation for Distinguished Service as an advocate for students.
Nicholson spent 20 years in the retail management field before entering higher education. She began her career with Marks & Spencer in London and then moved to Chicago to work in a variety of department store management positions. Her research interests include the preparation of students with appropriate skills for industry, developing student leadership skills and the role of communications in the retention of retail employees. In 2013, she received the Inspiration Award for work as a mentor of awardees of the Chancellor’s Award for Public Engagement and Scholarship, an honor given to students, faculty, staff and community partners who exemplify the University’s commitment to engagement. She is also a Sam Walton Fellow, an honor given to two individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the Enactus organization, an international nonprofit organization that brings together student, academic and business leaders who are committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to improve the quality of life and standard of living for people in need.